My husband is out of town this week--and it's literally the worst week he could be gone.
I've got a first grader who isn't adjusting well to full-day school. When he's home he's either anxious and whining about being scared. Or he's pissed--yelling, hitting, and just making life miserable for everyone. The first day of school was basically an hour-long, in-classroom panic attack followed by him running down the halls screaming when I told him I had to leave.
All this while my 4-year-old is begging for mommy time all day, all night. And I'm giving her as much as I can, but I've also got a 2-year-old who is in to EVERYTHING! He's constantly dumping something (that we accidentally left with in reach) on the floor--full boxes of cereal, bag of chips, caramel syrup, water, milk, eggs. (And that was just the past 2 days.) I know, I know, keep things out of reach. Well, that's great advice for someone with one kid.
When I'm not cleaning up his messes, I'm trying to keep him out of everything that is supposed to be locked up, but that accidentally gets left open or that he's figured out how to get into despite child proofing. Plus keeping a diaper on him is a constant struggle--and sometimes I fail and sometimes there's pee on the floor and sometimes there's worse... Or then my older kids decide to open the front door and he slips out and is running down the neighborhood--while I'm on the toilet.
My daughter has a new dance teacher, and she hates most new people in her life, so of course she hates the new dance teacher (who is super awesome, BTW). So she'll only go into the room if I go into the room. And she'll only dance if I dance with her. And I'd LOVE to do hip hop class with her--except I've got a toddler who can open the studio doors and run outside and a pissy 6-year-old who hates life. So I'm sitting on the floor of the dance studio with three upset kids yesterday afternoon--and I've just had it!
So you know what I did?
I texted my husband and asked him to come home early. And he's not close. He's across the country right now. But I'm at the end.
I might be a parent, but I am also just one person with just two hands. And there is a limit to what I'm able to do and to handle. And I might have 3 kids who all need things from me, but despite what "parenting experts" or mommy lifestyle bloggers or anyone else says--I can not do it all. I can't be all things for all my kids.
Sometimes the best I can give has to be enough for them, even if that best doesn't meet all their wants--and even some of their needs.
This week's frustrations kept playing in my mind as I sat down to write this post. And the more I thought about it, the more I realized that it's weeks like this that inspired me to start Hissyfit.
Parenting isn't all sunshine and schedules and professional pics in perfectly matched outfits with perfectly smiling kids. Parenting is hard. And it's messy. And sometimes it's all about the survival.
So I'd like to know--How do you survive?
How are you surviving this crazy thing called parenthood? How do you survive the tantrums? The sleepless nights? The first days of school? The crying child who's struggling socially or emotionally or mentally? We've all struggled through something, so I'd like to know how you've done it.
And I'm not just saying this to be rhetorical. Over the next several months, I'm planning to dig into some of these survival topics and if you've got something to share about how you have or are surviving this parenthood game, I'd love to include your thoughts. So leave a comment blow. Or email me at anastasia at gohissyfit.com. And let me know how you're surviving!