real life

i would like to mention that i had a piece of pizza for dinner. and am now snacking on conversation hearts (that were purchased for the kids' valentine's cards, because you can't just have a plain card these days.)  eric, however, is eating a salad and an apple.  and this is why sometimes it is really annoying living with another person.  you know, your flaws and weaknesses completely in your face.  i even have to wake up staring at the salad and apple man.  geez.  (but, i had a diet coke)

and now, for take 5.  kids, that is.  5 kids.  and dare i say that 5 kids is more than a few.  we have exactly twice as many kids as the average american sized household.   and for those that say after having 3 kids or 4 kids, adding another one is easy?  i think those people don't actually have that many kids.  or else i'm doing something really wrong.

sarahjoy is a delight.  in a two year old sort of way.  she's cute as pie (although my pies are not that cute, i make much cuter brownies) and giggles and runs her tiny diaper butt around in the most adorable fashion.  she smiles and her deep brown eyes disappear.  her two little hands squeeze my cheeks and she lays her face on mine and waits for kisses.  she adores her purple converse and insists on wearing them at all times.  and she has now mastered her first english word, "uh oh!"

and then there's the not so cute two year old thing.  for one, she poops in a diaper.  which is just gross.  she needs help with her food.  she has to be buckled into the car seat.  and unbuckled.  she wants to be carried everywhere.  her outfits don't just jump on her, and she has a penchant for dumping and running (toys, that is.)  she needs me.  constantly.  and this particular person really liked the somewhat independent life we had trained our 4 kids to lead.  things like not bothering mommy on saturday mornings.  or going to bed at 7:00 without a fit.  or taking a shower by themselves.

i knew life would be different with an itsy bitsy around.  i've had four two year olds already (which i think has to make me some sort of expert.)  but i would be lying if i didn't say that it's a big adjustment.  just this semester, for the first time in 10 years, i had a few hours to myself when the little kids went to preschool three days a week.  and i LOVED it (trust me, i was not the mama walking back to the car crying.)  but alas, i am never alone now...and this introvert gets really tired of people needing me all the time.  and climbing on me.  and calling my name.  one day last week i was sitting on the sofa with the kids all piled around.  it was a norman rockefeller moment, except for me saying through gritted teeth, "please.  stop smothering me.  mommy needs some space." (repeat 10 times nicely)  (and i must add that just after i typed that sentence eric sat down on the sofa and leaned up against me and i had to repeat once again...)

so we are working it out.  the new normal.  i am no stranger to introducing new children to the family and so there does come perspective with experience.  i know that in time we will settle in to what works for us and that each little and big person will figure out what 7 people in their family means for them.   for now, i am exhausted, a bit irritable, and overwhelmed.  doesn't that make you want to be my friend?   i feel like a big slob - i haven't been to the gym in weeks.  i barely remember what i look like in make-up and i am not sure if i could have a conversation with an adult or not.   in the 12 days we have been home i think i have gotten dressed 4 or 5 times.

and because i just think it's sort of funny, here is our schedule of the last 12 days...

friday - come home
saturday - urgent care for me (pink eye)
sunday - pajamas
monday - pediatrician for sarahjoy
tuesday - pajamas
wednesday - cardiologist for sarahjoy
thursday - pajamas
friday - micah wakes up with a fever and throwing up (pajamas)
saturday - micah throwing up (pajamas)
sunday - annaclaire wakes up with pinkeye, lydia wakes up with a fever (pajamas)
monday - I RAN ERRANDS!!!!! (not in my pajamas)
tuesday - josiah throwing up (pajamas)
wednesday - ???

i think i might have to get dressed tomorrow.  micah is hacking and we're going on day 6.  i think it might be time to see a doctor.  because, of course, we have itsy bitsy who needs to stay HEALTHY so she can have OPEN HEART SURGERY!!!  just a minor detail which occasionally takes up some of my energies.

so here we are.  in all of our glory.  but she is the cutest thing on two purple chuck taylor feet. (which i should follow this post with an incredibly adorable picture of her and her shoes.  and that would make me the perfect blogger.  but i don't have one.  tomorrow...)


Kirsten said...

you are awesome and amazing. even in your pajamas. and i will happily come and eat pizza and conversation hearts with you. any time. :)

praying for healthy little people. and healthy big people too. and some "me" time for mommy. and for sj's little heart.

sending hugs...and chocolate...and 20 minutes to yourself.

Anonymous said...

Wow. I hear ya. Hang in there. And do NOT feel guilty for staying in pajamas whenever possible! The only reason the 5th kid was easy for me (at first) is because he was 4 1/2 years old when he came home and was already potty trained and sleeping through the night! He could dress and feed himself and he had a year long honeymoon where he pretended to be perfect before the hard stuff hit! But when it hit.....whew! Seriously had to eat my words about five kids being easy.....!

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for just being real! I grow weary of all the perfect happy facebook posts from my friends that make it appear they are living the dream life in mommyland. I only have two children (both toddlers)and I feel like our schedules have been remarkably similar the last few days. While I am blessed beyond measure and so grateful for every moment I have with them, sometimes it is just tough! Praying for your family!

Anonymous said...

I absolutely love your blogs..I only have two kids 4 and 2 and you always seem to say exactly what I am thinking..especially the part about you being an introvert and being smothered!! I feel that too, although with less children. Thank you for being so real and also thank you for saving little Sarahjoy from whatever her future might have held had you not found her!

Justin and Lisa said...

Amazing, Ash! Keep on being you! You're doing a great job! You have lots of prayer support behind you (or in front of you!)

Anonymous said...

Hi Ashleigh - this is Aimee (Stults) Curtis from Faith Academy, and I just "stumbled" onto your blog recently (through the FA newsletter, actually). I can't believe how divine the timing is, though, as I read your words and relate so deeply to them! We added our third biological child eight months ago, and I am home with them all the time too. Wow - that whole introvert thing is just what I was trying to explain to my non-introvert husband. Hearing someone else voice just what I've been feeling is so liberating! It is a joy and blessing to read your journey. Especially since we've felt for many years that God may have adoption in mind for us as well.

You and your family are in my prayers.