i don't know

one of my life's values is honesty. i never want to come across as that person who seems to have it all together. although, i think sometimes i do, for the mere fact that i am shy. silence equals put-togetherness. especially when you are the pastor's wife who is supposed to be perfect, right? okay, well, i'm not. let's get that out there. no perfection living in this body. not even close.

so i found myself thinking about my last blog post and i couldn't bear to go to bed without posting again. it sounds so fluffy, so nice, what a sweet adoption story. and it is in so many ways. certainly looking at our 'special needs' child one could only be amazed and filled with gratitude. we have many friends who are struggling with their children and their adjustments and in some ways i even feel guilty for how easy lydia has been. which makes me even more want to proclaim the other side of the story.

four kids has not been easy. the adoption part of lydia has been a breeze. the part of adding another family member has not been. the bottom line is i am in a situation in which i can't possibly do all the things i am supposed to be doing. i have been tasked with a job too big and i must constantly ask myself, 'what is the most important thing to do at this moment?' depending on the time available, how many kids are around, what the weather is, what's most pressing, how i am feeling...i make my decision. for the past two weeks, the answer was something other than going to the grocery store. so, one day at lunch, when i was really hungry, i looked in the refrigerator and realized we had NOTHING to eat. nothing. not even a bowl of cereal. so i ordered a pizza. (coming from the family who didn't order a pizza for the first 6 years they were married.) and i proceeded to eat on the pizza for the next week while eric was out of town. no time for grocery shopping. the weather was warm, the grass needed to be mowed. birthdays were coming, need a present. there is not enough time for me to put food on the table, run the kids to activities, monitor homework, exercise, pay the bills, discipline the kids, keep the yard looking good, do my bible study, play with the little ones, plan for christmas, volunteer at church, clean the house, and all the 100 other things a mother must do.

that's the fact of the matter. there is simply not enough time. the older ones are helpful, very helpful. but none of the four are independent. for now, we have four little people who constantly need mommy or daddy. so what gives? most of the time it is the food. cereal and hotdogs are regular meals at our house. but as of now, i am sick of that food. i want something GOOD to eat. well, got to pick something else then. maybe exercise. then i feel horrible about myself and am grumpy not to speak of the fact that my pants don't fit. that's not good for anyone. dirty house. that's okay for a while. but after a few weeks its gross. moldy toilets are not good. i'm not obsessive about cleanliness but seriously, dirty is gross. winter is coming so the yard won't be so much work. but christmas is coming too, and buying presents for four kids is no small task - already working on that - not to mention the decorating and celebrating that goes along with the season. so I DON'T KNOW!!! i don't know how to do this life.

i love it. i hate it. i am excited. i am exhausted. the kids bring me life. the kids suck the life out of me. i am navigating a new road and i by no means have figured out all of the curves along the way. sometimes i want it to all go away. sometimes i couldn't think of anything better. tonight, i am thankful that they are sleeping, that no one is pooping on the carpet, that grandma is here visiting, and daddy is finally home. and wondering who will be our next president?


Jeff said...

Glad to see you back to blogging-- I appreciate your honesty. Jen and I can really realte to this post, but, alas, she doesn't even have time to read blogs anymore...

Alice Stephenson said...

Dear Ashleigh, just so you know, I appreciate your honesty because it makes me feel like I'm not the only one who doesn't have it all together---and I just have Rachel. I think that we just have to ask for help when we need it and take the help that is offered. For me, right now, there is the added stress of only having one income. I have no idea how you live on a preacher's budget. And for running away, I'm with you.
I will be really honest....I have long admired you and wanted to be your friend, but I thought you had too much together and would think I needed too much work. I see you share stories with other people at church and well....i just want you to know that I admire you. For a lot of different reasons. Weither it's appearance--or I believe genuineness--you are someonje with a lot to admire.I keep you in prayers because that's what I can offer. Thank you for keeping up the blog.