Our New Normal...from a better perspective.

Monday, February 10, 2014

So...I wrote this a few months ago.  Nothing has changed in our day to day life-- as the primary gets closer, things only get busier for Tyler, limiting his time and attention at home.  And I know he's pulled in a million directions, so I try to be as supportive as can, while still making sure to snap him out of his little political bubble when he needs it.

And by he, I mean I.

But when I wrote that blog, I think I was having a particularly hard week.  I don't remember the circumstances, but just reading it, I can tell how frustrated and tired I was.  So I wanted to write a little update.  Or at least a more balanced view of things.  Because even though it IS hard, there are good things to come from this season of our life...

So here's what I'm learning to appreciate about this whole semi-single, working mom scenario!

I believe that you only get better from a challenge.  This is hard and there are days Tyler and I don't talk.  There are days we do talk and I tell him, "I've been really mad at you all day."  But there are days when everything gets done-- Charlotte miraculously is fed, I work, I make it to the gym, groceries are bought, toilet paper is on the roll.  It is hard doing this alone, but you learn what you're made of and I can't lie...I'm proud of myself most days.  Ten hour road trips?  I can do it!  Navigating flights and airports?  Done it!  Doctors appointments and shots and planning birthday parties?  I can do that too.  And when you get used to doing it alone, it's just that much better and easier when Tyler is home.  Two parents, one kid?  A breeze!  Enduring hardship only makes the normal days that much easier, and that much more of a blessing.

{This one's for the girls!}

Yes, I have to put Charlotte to bed every night... But I get to put Charlotte to bed every night!  I could complain about having to do it all every night, or I could relish the time I get her all to myself.  I get to watch her splash in the bath.  I get to snuggle her every night at bedtime.  I get to see her big smile waiting for me in the crib each morning. I get to play in the snow with her.  A year ago, it was so bittersweet that I had to start sharing her with the world... and now, here we are.  Charlotte and Mommy.  Our little duo, my little sidekick.  I don't say that callously to Tyler because I know he HATES to miss it.  But it's my consolation prize...me and my little buddy are not at a loss for bonding time.

It's official...I love my job!  If you would have told me eight months ago that I would actually look forward to going to work, I would have laughed in your face and called you a meanie.  And while I haven't, by any stretch, hated my job since May, it was still a hard decision to go back to work.  But the last few months have confirmed that I made the right decision to keep working.  The days that I work are crazy and long and sometimes too much, but Charlotte is SO busy and this winter has been particularly cold and snowy and man...it's just good to have a reason to get out of the house and let someone else put the measuring cups back in the kitchen drawer for the 19th time today.  And beyond Charlotte, my job is just fun and I love my families and my co-workers are so supportive and...yay!

{Nineteen times a day.  For. the. love.}

You learn who your village is.  Our neighbors regularly invite Charlotte and I over for dinner-- our kids are running around and they're stealing pacis, and they're apologizing for not having salad, and I'm just so grateful for a few hours to be occupied and have grown ups to talk to.  My friend Ashley has too had us over for dinner; and texts me when it snows to see if we need any help.  Cora {my right hand} has Charlotte fed and ready to go, so we can go to the gym as soon as I get home from work.  Amy goes to church with me so I don't have to sit alone and walks around the restaurant with Charlotte so I can eat for five minutes.  Sarah just announced she was coming home with me after work one night so she could play with Charlotte and I could have a few minutes to myself {I sat on my bed and ate peanut butter out of the jar}.  I could keep going...  My friends are the greatest.  My "village" has never been so real as in the last three months.

So there is GOOD here.  I miss Tyler and I miss Charlotte for him.  I still hate the time we miss as a family, and there are plenty of days that I'm bitter for having to juggle this all alone.  But there are moms who do this all the time...I don't get a cookie.  And for me, there is an end in sight.  For now, I am sustained through prayer, supported by friends, and looking forward to the future!  The hard stuff only makes you appreciate the good stuff.

{Now, ask me how I feel on Wednesday night... When I've worked a long day, and have an early morning in front of me, and the trash needs to go out, and the recycling, and Charlotte is teething, and STOP PULLING ALL THE MEASURING CUPS OUT OF THE DRAWER!!}

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