Giving Life My All

Giving all of myself to everything in my life… God, my family, my health, my mind. This is my story… my ups and downs, struggles and triumphs.

The Word of the Day…. Exhausted.

on March 11, 2015

Lord, I need You
Oh, I need You
Every hour I need You
My one defense
My righteousness
Oh, God how I need You

Matt Maher – Lord I Need You

Sitting here at the end of an exhausting day and the lyrics to “Lord I Need You” keep running through my head.  I’m exhausted.  Mentally and physically exhausted.  I’m not sure what I was expecting when I decided 2 1/2 years ago to try my hand at staying home to raise my first son… but I surely did not expect it to be as hard as it is.  The grass is always greener on the other side, right?  I was so unbelievably unhappy working a full-time job and trying to raise a 1 year old.  I felt like I missed an entire year of my first born’s life.  I hated that I was probably not the first person to see him roll over for the first time… or wave goodbye for the first time… crawl for the first time or take his first steps (although I’m pretty sure I got to see those first steps at his 1st birthday party!).  I was sad… I was working to be able to afford to live and to afford daycare.  What was the point?  I didn’t want to send my baby to daycare but I had to because finances just didn’t work out in our favor.  So… we made a massive change moving from CT to Indiana to give me the chance to stay home and fulfill my dreams.

March 2013 – Standing on the location of our current home

I’ve been down both roads… full-time working mom and full-time stay-at-home mom.  Everyone has their own opinions.  Working moms think stay-at-home moms are ungrateful and weak for complaining about how tired they are all the time when it’s their choice to stay home.  Stay-at-home moms think working moms are selfish and have it easy because they get an 8 hour break everyday from their role in the house.  Honestly, I think both types of moms have it pretty hard… each for different reasons.

As a working mom, I remember how hard it was to leave my baby in someone else’s care day after day to go to a job that I was not happy with.  I remember being exhausted by the time I got home and not wanting to cook dinner or do the regular household chores.  I remember feeling horrible because I only had 2 hours with Cayden before it was time to get him to bed.  Life was hard…. I figured that surely staying home with my baby would be 100 times better.

Currently, as a stay-at-home mom, I’m exhausted from the moment I wake up until the moment I close my eyes.  I rarely have a normal conversation with an adult.  I still find it hard to find time for the regular household chores…. but the difference is that I wouldn’t change it for anything in the world.  There are days when I think the grass is greener on the other side… but then I think about how much I get to see and experience with my children.

Today was a rough day… it was actually completely fine the entire day up until about 5:30.  Greg gets home around then and, of course, at that same time is when Cayden likes to act up.  I’m sure he’s just excited to have his dad home but our house turns into complete chaos.  Greg and I can’t have a conversation with each other without Cayden interrupting and trying to make as much noise as possible to make it impossible for us to talk.  Tonight, Greg had basketball at a nearby church which he had to leave for at 7.  That left me to feed the kids dinner on my own, clean the dishes and continue to take care of them for another 2 hours of the day… on my own.  Dinner took close to an hour because Cayden just can’t help but goof around and talk during dinner.  Liam and I were finished eating in 25 minutes… Cayden took 45.  Dinner was finally over at 7:45, I cleaned up a bit until 8:15, and finally after that, Cayden, Liam and I were able to relax and watch a little TV while playing before Greg got home around 8:30.  At 8:45, it was time to head up to bed for the boys.  Greg took Cayden and I took Liam.  I heard Cayden talking to Greg in the bathroom asking, “how come mommy never takes me up?”  Thankfully, the explanation that “mommy takes Liam and daddy takes Cayden” is good enough for him right now… but the truth is, I’m just too exhausted and about 5 times out of 10, I’m annoyed about something and just want to veg out on the couch not having a conversation, not entertaining a child, not existing to anyone but me for an hour of my day.  Of course, tonight I was annoyed about a lot.  Greg didn’t help with dinner… Greg had a basketball game that took another 2 hours out of the day… Greg was on his phone the second he stepped in the door from work… and was texting people and playing games on his phone when he got home from the game.  I know it sounds like I’m blaming him for everything and I really shouldn’t but the way I see it is that staying home, taking care of the kids, cooking dinner, and cleaning up are all parts of my full-time job.  On days like today, I literally work a 12 hour day…. and at the end of a 12 hour day, I’m exhausted.  At this point, even the littlest thing annoys me.  I’m trying to work on bringing Cayden to bed on a more regular basis.  I understand that it’s important to him to have both of his parents involved in his bed time routine.  It has become a special time in our family… a time when there are no distractions… no electronics, no toys, no shared time with other people or kids… just one-on-one time with Cayden where we can read books and pray together.

March 2013 - Reading before bed with Oma

March 2013 – Reading before bed with Oma

Greg brought Cayden to bed tonight as he does most nights.  Brushed his teeth, put on his PJs, read a couple of books, said goodnight, turned off the lights, and closed the door.  Not more than 5 seconds after Greg closed his door, Cayden was up out of his bed and his room calling to Greg, “Daddy, I want a hug before bed.  Can I have a hug and kiss?”  It melted my heart.  Just like that… my annoyance with the day faded.  I love that little boy more than words can describe and his gentle, sensitive, sweet loving heart… a piece of Greg and me that I can hear and see in him.

I love the job I have… I wouldn’t trade it for anything in the world.  It’s amazingly difficult and amazingly rewarding at the same time.  Every day is a struggle… especially if I don’t make it to the gym.  On those difficult days, I find myself singing in my head, “Lord I need you, Oh I need you.  Every hour I need you”… just a little reminder to myself that I’m not doing this alone.  He is my strength and in those stressful, difficult times, He will show me something to lighten my heart and mind… I just have to keep my eyes and ears open to it.

**Disclaimer**  I hope I in no way offended either stay-at-home moms or working moms!  I respect you all and sympathize with both groups!

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