It started before my feet even touched the ground that morning. Einin was screaming saying that she didn't want to lay in bed beside me and drink her milk and, in fact, she very tearfully screamed "I no like you Mommy, you're scary". Truth be told Miss Einin, there are times when I no like you either. The tantrum went on dramatically for about 20 minutes before it turned on a dime. At which point, she wanted me. I did have to transfer the milk (because "it yucky") from the orange sippy to a green one. Normally I wouldn't indulge but I hadn't even had a cup of coffee yet and I was grasping at straws. Once the milk was done, I took the edge of my robe, spoke softly and dabbed her tears away. She became hysterical again and demanded, "You give my tears back to me Mommy!!". It was at this stage in the game that I started to wonder if maybe the occasional glass of wine I drank when I was pregnant was rearing its ugly head or maybe this was the beginnings of some sort of toddler bipolar disorder.
The rest of the day was a blur of kid errands, school commitments and the like. I finally got to work at 2:30 pm and worked for one hour before I needed to leave to go pick the boys up from school.
Then it was home, homework, dinner, baths, laundry and a messy house. Finally, it's bedtime which (depending on the day) is either a sweet and cuddly reward or it's the final gauntlet of the day. Some nights, I literally think my brain will melt if I have to read the same Amelia Bedelia story one more time.
Then it's mostly done and I can collapse onto my bed to mindlessly cruise Instagram and decompress all the while knowing it will all start again before my feet even hit the ground tomorrow.
I'm tired...like bone deep tired. I find myself fantasizing about what life might have been like if I had not had children. In the fantasy, I'd be a roving photographer or backpacking across Scotland or laying on a beach in Costa Rica after spending the day taking surf lessons. Life would be slow and quiet. I'd eat slower too and have longer conversations. My legs would be shaved more often. I feel guilty for thinking this way and it feels so ungrateful. I know how blessed I am and I am deeply grateful for my children but some days, I just want to run for the hills. This shit is hard.
It's scary too because you never quite know if you're doing it well and there's so much at stake. The decisions are far reaching and alter the course of multiple lives. Some days I feel terrifyingly unqualified.
I know that it will get easier (and then harder and then easier and so on). One day I'll look up and they'll be grown and, though I cannot imagine it at the moment, I know that I'll miss it. In the meantime, I'm just doing my best to keep my head up and pat myself on the back for this extraordinary act of hubris that is parenting. I'm patting you on the back too, my fellow mamas and papas. By the time you read this, you're kiddos will (hopefully) all be in bed and you'll have a soothing beverage in hand. Here's to another day of a job well done.