You know, I'm not much for swearing but when I look back on the month of April I have the overwhelming urge to just give it the finger.
Let's start with the opening of my Dayhome. No, let's start with the adjustment of going from maternity leave to working again. I'm sure lots of you can relate - it's hard. Twelve months of staying home and then going back to work sucks. Elliott used to sleep until 7-7:30, and now I have to wake up to an alarm? And wake him up? Gross. Oh, how I miss the lazy days of staying in our pjs while I make myself a latte, and a bowl of cereal and feed Elliott his breakfast around 8 am. I often didn't do anything productive until after his morning nap. Now my day starts between 6-6:30 (depending on if he wakes up before my 6:30 alarm, which he often does) and we hurry to get dressed and ready so we can be downstairs in the dayhome waiting for kids to arrive as early as 7.
I'll probably write another post detailing a typical day of a my life as a dayhome provider to 5 kids under 4, but for now let's just say I start my day running, and it doesn't stop until 5:15. That's just over 10 hours of being on the whole time. You know, I used to think I had to be "switched on" the whole day while home with my one child, but it is a whole other kind of busy when you're trying to keep your eyes and ears (and nose!) on 5 little that are still figuring each other out. (Read: some of them get along better than others) To say it has been hard is the understatement of the year. I say this with hesitation because all my parents are friends that will likely read this blog, but guys... I have no idea what I'm doing most days. I mean, they're all fed and safe and loved, but there was no training for this job, and Pinterest can only teach you so much. When you feel like you never stop moving between wiping that butt and that nose and those crumbs off the ground, I'm not even really sure when and where those Pinterest crafts are supposed to happen anyways. One day guys. One day we'll do more than just paint on paper, I promise.
So now I've gone from being a mother of one one year old, and feeling like I just barely knew what I was doing, to trying to figure out how to "parent" a 2 and 3 year old as well. Time outs. How to talk to them when they do something like push someone or tell a lie. How to get them to eat their lunch. How to get them to clean up (Hello, counting to 3! God bless the mother that came up with that!) Kissing boo boo's and wiping butts. Oh, and then there are the babies and the diapers. The endless diapers. And the crying. I literally yearn for the day when they can all talk and tell me what it is they want. And the day that they all nap easily, and dare I wish for it to be at the same time?
So I'm in a little over my head. Maybe a lot. And then a couple days into April I get the idea in my head that Elliott is sensitive (allergic?) to dairy. The only way to figure it out is to cut it out for at least 2 weeks and see if it makes a difference (in his poop, sleep patterns and excema) Elimination diets aren't easy and they aren't cheap, so imagine my frustration when he seems more gassy, his skin flares up big time, and his sleep drastically changes for the worse. I'm talking up every hour or less and needing to be held upright (no way he'll lay down in bed with me!) to sleep.
So for those of you that are keeping track, I've made a giant life change that is proving to be extremely challenging, and now I'm getting three or four one hour stretches of sleep if I'm lucky. And I'm not allowed to eat cheese.
Then one morning we wake up and Elliott pukes all over me. My kid doesn't puke. And so now we've got the flu. First him, and then me, and I have no choice but to close the dayhome for 3 days after being open for only 2 weeks. Grreeeaaaat. Oh, and it's finals week for Chris, so while I know he wanted to take care of us (and he did, really) he needed to do so somewhat from a distance to make sure he could make it to all his finals without puking. (Poor guy made it through the week only to get sick on Saturday afternoon)
Are you starting to understand why I might want to make such a robust hand gesture to this ridiculous month of horror??
So that's where I've been. Sorry for such a long absence. I am working on some changes to make my life a little smoother and will try to keep you all in the loop as I go along. I know the Lord is working in all of this and He has been humbling me each and everyday as I confess to Him that I can't do any of this without Him. Spiritual formation is happening each day, and my only job is to make that step towards Him, not away from Him. I would certainly covet your prayers as I continue to adjust to these life changes and try to figure out a new routine!
Now excuse me, I need to go clean my kitchen and get another scoop of ice cream. That's right, give me alllll the dairy.
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