Last night was a rough one. I sat rumpled in the dimly lit front room after the kids had finally gone to bed. The embers were dying down in the wood stove and I was in dire need of quiet. Just as I was about to take a deep breath I heard Silas wake and asking to ‘nuggle Mama. All at once, I felt like I was suffocating. I had nothing left and needed a moment to regroup. I needed the night air so I slipped on Mike’s big plaid coat and sat on the porch. The night was cold, but not as cold as I needed. I listened to the river rushing across the road and the crisp quiet until I caught my breath and dried my eyes. Mike’s relief was tangible as my shadow entered our door frame. With one final “mama” whimpered, Silas ‘nuggled in and played with my eyelashes until he fell back into slumber.
Sometimes it is all just too heavy and I lose myself in the muddle of cuddles, diaper changes and refereeing. I have been feeling myself slip into February’s darkness. It happens every year and it is only the subtle lengthening of daylight and kinder sun that sustains me some days. It is intensified by two very young and very clingy babes who climb onto the stove and counters and rifle through the cupboards relentlessly. We have been watching too many movies and spending too much time online, though I do try to fill our days with fresh baked food, puzzles, crafts, books and time outside. It has been weeks since we pulled up that horrid carpet or slept in our own room. Most of our clothes are in piles and bags as I try to find the time to put 2 or 3 coats of finish on the new pine floor with 2 hours drying time between and another 72 hour wait before I can begin putting it all back in place. Oftentimes the kids are just happiest when they sit on me for hours so instead of doing everything else, that is what we do. A bit mind-numbing after a long winter.
All that to say, today was good. I made a pie and a double batch of pitas (with spelt flour this time) with some fresh tzatitki. We did some puzzles and ate our pie first. I did some homestead dreaming and came up with a rather perfect name for the sweet lemon cuckoo orpington I have my heart set on.
Sometimes I need to reign myself in a bit and remember that me being home isn’t about me or the crafts I want to make or the home improvement projects I want to complete. I am home for them. And all they need or want is for me to love them. Mike put it into good perspective when he told me he was about to get frustrated by their lack of cohesion and understanding while putting a puzzle together when he realized that it wasn’t about putting the puzzle together, but about spending time with the kids in a moment of joy that they could understand.
Yes, we still have different ideas of what is fun or joyful. I am still learning to slow it down for all of our sakes and sanity.
We do need to find time to breath though. We can’t give everything without giving a little to oursleves. The same is true when they tell you to put your oxygen mask on before you put your child’s on. We must be fed, loved, and breathing before we can give it all back to our families.
I will let you know when I figure it out.
go gently + be wonderful