Wednesday, January 4, 2012
So... if you read my blog just to see the cute pictures of the littles, you should probably skip this one.
People say to me all the time, "You have such a beautiful family." They see us out and about, at church or shopping or whatever, usually with happy kids, both big and little, and a reasonably cheerful mom and dad. We look like peace and love and racial harmony.
Ha, ha, ha, ha, ha!
What I really have, in many ways, is three families: the family with the big kids, or the "original" family; the family with the littles, which is sort of like the "new" family; and the "combined" family, which is where everything tends to go to hell in a hand-basket.
I feel like the woman in the graphic I've attached to this post. I've had the big kid plates spinning pretty well, those original three, and I could keep the little kid plates spinning pretty well too, even though they are hard plates to spin, if I could just set those big kid plates down for awhile. But I can't, because their plates need spinning too so I'm spinning all six at once and I also have the husband plate and the the pet plate and it's really hard and then... maybe some outside clown cuts in on my performance, like a death in the family, and Mr. Death Clown starts messing with my plates and everything just comes crashing DOWN!
What we get then is mommy melt-down, and it isn't pretty. It's a screaming, crying, hysterical mess that makes everyone just want to get away. From her. In these moments, I honestly feel like pretty much the worst mother on the planet. The. Worst. I feel like I am just not giving anyone what they need and like I am a total failure and you know what? It sucks.
My kids range in age from 22 to 5 at this time. That's a huge difference in terms of wants and needs for a mom to be in tune with. Concerns are ranging from career choices to learning to tie shoes. I know of so many moms who seem to be able to do it, but I'll tell you something... it's hard. I'm not sure I'll ever feel that I'm adequate at this.
I love my family. Every single member, completely and totally. I love that the big kids have sacrificed for the littles. I also hate that the bigs have sacrificed for the littles. I just wish that I could keep everyone's plate spinning perfectly and that I would be a better, more consistent performer.