We are happy. Fulfilled. Exhausted.
I look at the joyous pictures we took during the first visits. And then later, when she came home. We were genuinely happy. If I take the mental tiredness out of the equation, we could be pretty happy now too.
I had an hour chat with my mother in law. Always funny and encouraging. I asked her if there were times when she didn’t like her kids. We had a good laugh about that. But this is serious business. I love my kids, and I enjoy their company, and I like their personalities. But there are days when I downright dislike them, and I get so irritated at repeating myself. I answer the same question ten times one morning. And I wonder if it’s for reassurance, or she forgot, or she is testing me, or she is slow upstairs. I stopped this evening and I looked my daughter in the eyes and I asked her back: “what did I answer her multiple times today.” She smiled a knowing grin. And answered her own question. Then i told her I really don’t like saying the same thing over and over. It actually eats away at my patience. Why not use that ounce of grace for something actually necessary, and not wasting it on being annoying.
I yell at my kids. And I confess when I am wrong. I keep my promises even if they mean disappointing them. I preach perseverance and consistency. The other day I was wrecking my brain about how I can clearly stare the boundaries and the consequences and expectations and dumb it down for them. But the more I over-process their information, the less they have to work to pay attention, to stay alert, to adapt. I do my very best, my limit is stretched, near the breaking point. And then o realize the best I can do for my family is to empower then, let them figure it out on their own, let them make mistakes and deal with the consequences.
I’m in the thick of parenting, bags under my eyes, my hair messy, my arms aching, my legs shaking… what am I doing here? The best i can. I don’t doubts I’m in the right place, in the right family for me. I love my girls, with their unique gifts and challenges and beauty. So much beauty! But there are days when I dislike them all and I want some time away from them. My own beloved husband, and my daughters. Including my dog.
Today I celebrate the completion of the second adoption. Today I am a real full time parent who had to push back on whiny requests. One think is good: I’m so tired, my reaction is slow and thus less heated. They still find the acceleration button. I must hide it better.