Saturday, August 16, 2014

let's get real.

The month between Spencer's birth and the day my mom arrived were full of extreme highs and some pretty crappy lows. Having two children under two isn't the easiest thing in the world, but it also isn't the hardest. I could have had twins... or two sets of twins under two.... or two kids in one year... or triplet girls! You get my point. It is hard but every situation always has another side to the coin... or whatever that saying is!

The first two weeks weren't actually too terribly hard. Max had time off work and so we were able to do the hand off and make sure both of the boys had what they needed when they needed it, making the meltdowns and tantrums few and far between.

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However, about 10 days into life with two babies, Lachlan got sick. Really sick. Not hospital sick but cough, cold, fever, won't eat, sleep or drink, uncontrollable VOMIT kind of sick. And then Max went back to work. And then I went temporally blind because I had been wearing my contacts too much.

I like to label that week of my life as "my worst week of motherhood yet" because it was hard. Really, really hard.

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Lachlan was still getting use to having to share me and I was still getting use to learning how to meet the needs of two little children 24 hours a day. Max was a HUGE help but he works 12 hours a day, five days a week and some Saturdays too. And all of this is normal, every day, get-over-yourself-and-move-on-with-life-because-millions-of-people-do-this-everyday kind of thing. Again, I know things could be much worse.

But then Lachlan got sick and I lost my vision. I had a very, very hard time seeing and Lachlan wanted me ALL THE TIME. He was so sad and clingy and tired and sick. And honestly, that wasn't really the hard part. I could have dealt with that. I can manage cuddling two babies at once with my eyes closed. My love and attention could have totally been shared with both these beings that completely relied on me.

But then there was the vomiting. The out-of-nowhere, landed in my face, mouth, down my shirt, all over the floor, no warning kind of power spews. Inside. Outside. In the middle of aisle ten at the grocery store! I can't tell you how many emergency showers we had that week. Five, ten, Fifteen?? I have no idea because I was just trying to survive.

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[yes, that is my brand new sleeping baby who was carefully, but quickly, put down on the hard wood floor while scooped up the toddler just before he threw up all over his brother. This is real life people...]

That Saturday I cried. I cried because I was tired. I cried because I was worried we would never get our sweet, kind, loving little boy back. I cried because I smelled like vomit. I cried because my eyes hurt so bad. I cried because I started to question if I was going to be a good enough mother. I cried because I felt guilty for crying. It was not pretty.

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But then the vomiting stopped and Lachlan slowly became Lachlan again. He was still sick and getting use to being a big brother, but he was getting back to normal. I came to terms with my eye problem and sorted it out with my doctor. My parents arrived and I had all the help I could have ever asked for or needed.

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That week became a memory that I can look back on now and laugh about. I now know I wasn't failing my children. I wasn't going to fall into a black hole of vomit and snotty tissues. I was just finding my feet and navigating my way through murky water.

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It made me realize just how thankful I am for my little family, good health and sweet friends. In the grand scheme of life, I know this "worst week of motherhood" will certainly be surpassed by an even more challenging one... or five. Knowing I have support and people to rely on is what makes it all okay.

So why am I sharing this? Why did I put a picture of my child's vomit on the internet for all the world to see?!? Because keeping it real is what life is all about. Seeing pictures of happy smiles and fun adventures is nice, but it is also refreshing to know that no one is perfect and sometimes life is messy. We all struggle and that is okay.

Being a parent is the best thing that ever happened to me but that doesn't mean it isn't hard sometimes. Most days are great, but there are certainly days (or sometimes weeks) where the shit hits the fan and I wonder if I am doing anything right at all. If this is you, know that you are not alone. Know that you are doing the best you can do at that moment and tomorrow is a new day. A new day where the stars might just align and your two children will nap at the same time!!

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