Sunday, March 9, 2008

Stepping Outside the Chaos

I haven't been posting much lately because we have been so harried... what with finding a new place to live, planning how to do it, doctor's appointments, registering for day camp, making lists, planning for Hawaii, and just trying to live our regular lives which always seems to go a hundred miles an hour.

I keep imagining that one day, when we have older kids, a big enough house, no toddlers, whatever, that life will be slower paced, a little more peaceful, less frantic. That I will be able to make projects (organizing things, decorating a room, purging things we don't need anymore, getting the whole family to the dentist, for G-d's sake!) and follow through on them.
I always feel like I just try to manage getting through the day, until Michael gets home, then with TWO adults I will be able to get something completed, but the moment he walks in the door, its dinner, and homework, and clean-up or baths, and the minute they all get put down to bed, the last thing either of us wants to do is be productive.

I read blogs like Owlhaven, this woman who had four kids and then adopted six more, and while her life seems a bit manic, she always comes off sounding so serene. She never mentions wanting to lock herself in the bathroom and cry, or having to walk out the door for 10 minutes and pace back and forth in the alley until she is able to come back in and pretend she is not stressed.

I have this fantasy that everything will change when we move around the corner to our slightly larger house. This desire to purge all the extraneous STUFF we have around the house is growing again, and I hope it lasts through the move. I imagine that if I can get rid of lots of the stuff we never use, freecycle it all away, that I can reward myself with a beautiful new bedroom set, and a lovely dining room table which will magically make my family have peaceful family dinners with no throwing food on the floor, no crying, no "I don't WANNA have family dinner!!", no hysterical toddlers having to be forced into their booster chairs.

I know this kind of chaotic life can only be changed by me, or Michael and I, changing our patterns but I almost feel like I am too busy, too crazed, to sit down and figure out what needs to be done, what needs to be changed, what I need to change into. Figure out what words to use to make it all calm. Make everyone behave better.
I need to step outside of it all, get off the hamster wheel, stand outside the circle and look in.

Maybe five days in Hawaii will help. But I know me and short vacations. I will likely need a vacation from my vacation because we will be trying to squeeze all the cool touristy things in to those few days. But I will have to come home and go into full packing mode, and move to the new house in 7 days.

Then it will all get better.



Snowbird said...

I hope it gets better. I keep wishing I could be nearer to help out from time to time. A friend of mine down here has 4 year old triplet grandkids and she still spends one day a week helping her daughter out with the kids--even though they are in daycare.

There ya go!! Daycare! How old do the twins have to be?? Even one day a week would help.

Shama-Lama Mama said...

This isn't so much about needing a break AWAY from it all, as a need to get better involved in all of it. Not MORE involved, but better, you know?

I guess, though, I would need to get away to get the perspective I need. In all the insanity, I can't even figure out what it is we are doing wrong, to figure out how to make it right. I don't think we are ready for SuperNanny or anything, as its not so much bad behavior (although often its that) as just a constant state of hysteria.

I just want to know how to make things peaceful. And I imagine as the twins grow older, it will be less about tantrums and freakouts, and more about fighting between siblings.

Is every family this crazed?

Part of me thinks we all need to get out and do things that "tire them out" but we are so tied to this eating and napping schedule, that we are locked at home all day from 11-5. Then its dinner, then bed.


gpc said...

It is so hard when they are little. I remember my grandma telling me that she loved to have a nursing baby (she had 8 kids) because at least she could sit and cry while the baby was eating. Someone told me when mine were small that if you aren't beating them, that alone is proof that you're doing a great job. The hysteria does pass, really and truly, and you will look back with some nostalgia. I promise. Meanwhile, all you can do is exactly what you are doing, enjoy the little things, and hang in there!

Shama-Lama Mama said...

Thanks... its good to hear that, truly, "this too shall pass". Michael and I keep looking at each other sometimes, amazed that this life is what we dreamed of, cried about, suffered through miscarriages for, when we both are doing our best just not to throw things in frustration.

I keep imagining that when the twins are older, can be reasoned with, things will be easier. That this is just the terrible twos, double-style.

Noah was a great two-year old, but was an only child. He is much more difficult now that he is older, though, and I fear it all could just get worse if I don't make some changes.

But thats just fear. It might all be just fine. Its the not knowing if I can fix it, or if I need to wait it all out.

Robyn Jones said...

If it makes you feel any better....I also get pretty overwhelmed.....

Killlashandra said...

Hmmm, I know we all hope it will get better but I'm not sure when you have kids that life ever really calms down to be like it was before you had kids. Regardless of when they move out. My shared that insight with me just the other day when she said she frets when she doesn't know what I'm doing and I've long since moved out. ;)