Recently I’ve had several new followers and I feel compelled to start writing again to earn that follow-ship. Yes, I clearly just made up that word.
I have no excuse for not writing other than the fact that I work two jobs, have 3 kids and elderly parents and am currently having the life sucked out of me by all of that. But really, I shouldn’t complain. My immediate circle – my kids and my husband – are healthy and generally pretty happy, I like to think. My daughter is thrilled to be making slime to share and trade with her friends. My almost-7 year old has learned how to ride his bike with no training wheels and has started swimming lessons. And the 4.5 year old is just … well, he’s happy tumbling around and being himself.
I, however, am overwhelmed. 950 patients in my family practice, a second job at a private health care clinic which is more demanding that I thought it would be, and an elderly declining father who has be move into a retirement facility because he is “too healthy” for a government long-term-care facility but not safe enough to continue to stay at home. The decision to move him comes right before his 83rd birthday and 50th (FIFTY YEARS!) wedding anniversary. It is not how I thought we’d be celebrating.
And to top it all off, I feel like I am not present for my kids enough and when I am I am often tired, frustrated and giving them shit for being kids.
So, my husband was finally able to get back to the Christmas shopping now that all the kids are back in school and not sick anymore.
After multiple texts back and forth about what stuffies to get the kids, being unable to locate the one we know they all wanted at the Disney store, my brilliant receptionist spent all of 10 seconds on Google and located what we needed at the Showcase store.
I am sitting in a salon chair finally getting my hair done. It desperately needs some help and this was the only time I could fit it in. I
work this afternoon and then I am off for almost three weeks.
Three more hours of patient visits to go.
Three more hours of lab reports, consults and prescription renewals.
Three more hours of dealing with other people’s problems.
Yesterday I started to worry that I was getting depressed again. I suddenly just felt … I don’t know, I felt off. I felt like I just didn’t care about any of it anymore. I didn’t want to go home and face the chaos of trying to clean and pack and deal with the kids.
But then I got home and amongst the chaos and dirty faces and piles of laundry to fold, I felt immensely better. I was happy to be home. I can’t begin to describe how reassuring that was to feel. Despite the state of emergency that my house is currently in, I was happy to be home and in the middle of it.
I don’t need a break from my family, house or kids. I need a break from work.
Husband is at a rehearsal for a show next week. A friend’s band is doing a covers night and they asked him to sing a song so I am home alone tonight with three kids.
Bedtime gets started early here. The baby was in his crib at 6pm with his bottle. The older boy was in the bath and the eldest was I her room writing something.
She came in to show me. “How to be good”. I was very impressed! She knows the rules! Too bad she doesn’t actually follow them!
Listen. No talking back. Do something the firs time you are asked. Do as you are told. Focus your ears. Do not ignore. And all this information is good.
After bath, I read them a few of daddy’s old Smurfs and Ewoks comic books. Then it was time to get into bed. I told them a make-up story all about Princess Rose and the good transformer who worked with the Prince to rescue her from the bad transformer. But that story wasn’t enough, so I had to tell another one with Spiderman and how he became Spider-transformer after Optimus Prime injected him with nano-bots to assist the Autobots in taking down the bad transformer. (Neither kids has seen the Transformer movies, or the cartoon, but their daddy tells them these make-up stories all the time. I’m sure mine paled in comparison.)
Bedtime seemed to be going so well until it didn’t. Suddenly neither of them were settling down and my voice started increasing in tone and pitch, and I may have tapped her on the back a little harder than I had intended in an attempt to get her attention and stop sitting up in bed. I’d gotten hit in the face at least three times by the Spiderman doll and clearly had enough and that’s when the waterworks from the girl started:
“You never spend any time with me.”
“I just don’t know what to say to you.”
“Why do you always have to work?”
“Why can’t you just spend all your time with us?”
Oy. She’s a master manipulator. At the age of six!
Needless to say, bedtime took about 3 hours. It’s a little after 9pm, I haven’t had my dinner and I’m seriously considering opening a bottle of wine.
I swear I have no idea how my husband does this on a daily basis. He’s amazing.
Woke up this morning to a very large blanket of snow. The kids of course were just beside themselves with glee to look out the window and see nothing but a white winter wonderland. So excited were they that when I came down to breakfast their snow-pants, jackets and boots were lying on the floor all ready to go. I called them, “Flat N” and “Flat J” and then explained how runners showcase their gear the night before a race. Like this:
Amidst the hustle and bustle of getting everyone ready this morning I was still coughing and my chest felt like it was on fire. So after we got everyone to school I went to the local clinic and had a chest x-ray. I’m sure it’ll be negative but I’ve been coughing for almost five weeks and I’m getting sick of it, pardon the pun. All three kids are sick and I’m pretty sure the baby (well, now a toddler) has an ear infection so husband is bringing him to the pediatrician this afternoon.
I’m sitting in my office now as patient after patient cancels their appointments today due to the inclement weather. It really is quite pretty out there. After I got the x-ray I walked into the local coffee shop (a Starbucks which normally I try to avoid) and got a Peppermint Mocha. Holy good God in Heaven. Pure joy. There is something about peppermint and chocolate around the holiday season that gets me every time.
Where I live, daylight savings time ended last night. Gone are the days when an extra hour of sleep was something to look forward to. Since having kids, any extra hour of sleep is appreciated but this return to “normal time” sucks.
Because instead of waking up at 6:30am, my kids were all up today an hour early – at 5:30am – and when I say they were awake, they were AWAKE.