Sometimes I feel like I’m being pulled in so many different directions that I’m surely going to make like an amoeba and split.
Actually, that could be quite handy really! A ‘me’ for my full-time job. A ‘me’ to be the involved parent I want to be. A ‘me’ to spend quality time with my husband. A ‘me’ for friends and family. A ‘me’ to do all those mundane chores … Yes, wouldn’t that be lovely?
I’m pretty sure I am as busy as I feel … but I think a big contributor to the overwhelm that is borne from this ‘busyness’ stems from the fact that I’m never alone anymore. I’m always answering to someone, or answering for someone!
It feels like I’m living in a constant state of “I should be doing something” or “I’m supposed to be somewhere”. There’s always something that needs doing or someone that needs attending to. When I do finally get a moment to breathe, it’s almost impossible to shut off the guilty feeling that comes with the sense that I should be spending my time doing the laundry, or writing that work document, or packing the daycare bags, or tackling the dumping ground that once resembled my kitchen bench …
I wish I could just sit. Listen to the fridge hum. Relish the quiet.
But my mind is busy too. Always on. Always thinking of a half dozen things at once. I’m exhausted, yet I don’t sleep easy. Sometimes I lie awake for hours, getting frustrated with myself for not sleeping, just thinking, thinking, thinking. Things I need to do, things I want to do, brilliant ideas I want to see evolve into reality, whether the kids have clothes washed for the next day, issues affecting my work projects, bills to be paid, how cold my feet are, whether I should just get up out of bed and wash the dishes while I’ve no distractions …the list is endless.
It feels like by the time I finally fall asleep I’m being woken up again, and the wheels start turning once more. I’m in constant motion. My natural state of being now seems to be with three things on the go at once. I must have made it look easy at some point because I’ve found my catch phrase of late to be “I’m only one person, I’m going as fast as I can. I can’t do everything all at once”!
So how do we do it? How do we keep going? How do we survive the sleep deprivation, the busyness and the lack of ‘alone time’ that comes with having children? How do we continue to get up the next day and give them our all (or at least keep them fed and clothed!), continue to successfully function in our jobs, and still have some time left for our friends and family?
Simple – we have very little choice but to!
It’s amazing what we are capable of when our only options are to sink or swim. I don’t call it a second wind anymore … it’s a 26th wind, and everyone has it in them. Having kids is one surefire way to find that out!