laborofwonder

Where Whine Meets Wine

Survival of the Fittest

on June 8, 2011

Yesterday was about a million degrees. Ok, not a million, but 102. Seriously. 102. And I live in what’s normally the frozen tundra! Thankfully, we have family that lives fairly nearby with a nice, big pool! What a reprieve! (At least until our state bird came out… the mosquito.) As much as we were needing a reprieve from the heat, lately I’ve been feeling like I need a bit of a reprieve from life! It’s just been so hectic and crazy! And with the upheaval of their normal schedule, it has also left my children behaving a little less than their normal sweet, compliant selves. Although, of course, as I write this, they are sitting next to each other, all three in a row. Just playin’ trains, with an occasional “Hey Mom, do you see me playing with the ‘big kids’?” giggle and jump from the littlest E.

sidenote: Sometimes I believe children have this need to make a liar out of their parents. Anytime you vocalize how sweet, polite, quiet, shy, loud, whatever… they are, they’ll do the opposite- publicly. (I don’t really believe they do this purposely to make a liar out of me, it’s just a happy coincidence on their part, I’m sure. haha!)

With lots of layers of various chaos going on around us, someone asked how we’re holding it together. I had no answer. Before drifting off to sleep, I told hubbyman that I was going to miss him while he was gone on his trip, and he responded with, “I’ll miss you too. I already miss you.” Which I, of course, thought he was saying as a joke, because my husband is so excited about this trip you’d think he was 18 and about to experience his first taste of freedom without parental control. That excited. It turns out he meant it. We’ve basically just kind of existing together the last month or two. We were in survival mode. We are in survival mode.

Anytime you’re in “survival mode” for too long, without reprieve, disaster usually ensues. So this weekend we get vacations from our lives. Ok, so he really gets an adventure (which is exactly what he needs), and I get some relaxation (which is exactly what I need, along with some retail therapy!). Even the kids are getting vacations, of sorts. The Bigger E’s will spend the weekend at their Grandparents, along with an uncle or two. And Littlest E is going with on the girls’ weekend, so he will be getting one-on-one attention that he doesn’t get a whole lot of.

Which brings me to the REAL survival tool: FAMILY. Obviously, immediate family plays a huge role in our lives. We are so blessed by them: From the great-great Grandma, to the Great Grandparents, Grandparents, Aunts, Uncles, Cousins… and everyone in between. We are thankful for all of them, and survive because of them. If you’re thinking, you don’t know my family, or you live far from them, or just want to be far from them… it’s not just about people you’re related to. We have a large group of people that we have CHOSEN to be family with. This doesn’t just apply to people with children, most of these were family to us before we even had children. it’s not about your relationship status, or how many (if any) children you have; it’s about love and support. It’s friends that have been there through a decade, or two. Friends that were our family when we were far from home. Friends that have seen us through, the ones we can depend on, the ones who puppy sit, the ones who insist on going out when they know it’s been a while since we’ve had any time away from the kids, friends who make plans and include us- as a family, 3 kids and all. These are friends that have become our family. Friendships that are so important to us, and beloved by us, as well as by our children.

For our family, it’s the combination of the two that really ensure our ability to survive. No, maybe that’s not entirely true. We would probably survive without them, but with them, and with all their support, love, and encouragement, we are able to thrive. As a family as well as individually.

It’s a good thing I have this support system, because otherwise, I might just lose it. I remembered putting the kid’s cups of milk in the fridge last night, so when I went to get them this morning….I’d gotten clean cups out of the cupboard and put them in the fridge. Without milk. And left the cups that had milk in them on the counter. I also spent a good 20 minutes looking for the puppy, because I’d forgotten I’d already let him out, and he was sleeping on the floor next to my bed. Ok, so it may have been more like 5-10 minutes, but I was in such a panic thinking I’d left him outside, that it felt like much longer! And those were just the first two things I did this morning. I’m sure I’ve had moments of “mommy brain” since… but I can’t remember. Wait…where are the kids?

Doesn’t it look like we all need a break?!

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One response to “Survival of the Fittest

  1. John says:

    Retail therapy . . . HA! 😉

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