Most of the time I feel like Nick and I are a pretty well-oiled machine. We have a schedule, and we stick to it. More times than not we are smooth sailing. But real life is never like that all the time. Curveballs await at every turn. This past week in particular was full of them. My four-year-old all of a sudden has to have the final say or a snarky remark, and is acting out at daycare. My one-year-old has discovered he has a mind of his own, yet can’t verbalize his needs, so he throws tantrums and objects instead. Then there’s the fact that I’m just over a month away from a due date that has come much too quickly.
Am I making the right decisions?
Are they eating healthy enough?
Did I get my point across in a way that will stick?
How do I prevent my kids from being little jerks?
Did I make sure to include Nick in that decision?
Will I be able to love and care for THREE of these precious little ones?
How do I explain the mess of a world we are living in to my curious four-year-old?
Are my actions as loud as my words so they see and hear me doing right?
Am I teaching them to be loving and kind and honest?
How can I make sure that I am?
AM I DOING ANY OF THIS RIGHT?
Some of the time, I’d say yes. But do I get road rage and display less than kind behavior sometimes at 7 a.m. on Monday morning? Yup. Do I forget from time to time that my oldest is four and not fourteen, and that it’s normal for him to not always act and feel the way I think he should? Yup. Do I come home after work every once in a while and cry as I hold my screaming one-year-old, imagining how I can do life in less than two months with another one? Sure thing.
There are days I go to bed feeling like a complete failure. Days where I pray to do better the next day. But I’ve found that 90% of the time, it’s the well-oiled machine going as it should. It’s laughter and love and hugs and “Yes, please” and trips to the park and baseball in the backyard. It’s feeling like we did right by them by teaching them something valuable. Its corn on the cob and watermelon on the deck, and endless emails and texts from Nick and I reliving what the boys said or did that morning or the night before.
The good stuff.
So when I ask myself if I’m doing this right…my answer is, “No…not all of the time.” And I’d like to think that everyone is in that same boat. Or at least I tell myself that to rid my guilt when I go to sleep thinking I could have done better. There will be harder days ahead, but they are fewer and farther between than the good ones.
And all too soon the emails and texts will no longer be about that morning or the evening before, but the years gone by. And I bet we won’t be talking about the days we got it wrong, but the days we got it right.