Obligations, adaptations, and rewards

reward.jpg Caution: Whiny post ahead

This was a tough week at our house. One of those that make you question why you’re doing the things that you’re doing. I guess it’s time for a big-picture perspective on things

Obligations

Erin had a couple of afterhours work functions that weren’t mandatory but still important. She wanted to go, but she didn’t want to go to because it meant that she would be getting home well after the kids were in bed. It’s difficult for her to do that. Plus…it’s work. Work should end @ 5pm and be done. Not drag on into the night. At least not her work.

Oh, and she also had the added benefit of coming home to a sick husband.

Early Tuesday morning, I got hit with the younger cousin of the Thanksgiving Day GI disaster. It was less horrible, but it was still pretty bad. And it was only made worse by the fact that Erin was going to be gone until 9pm that night. meaning that I was putting in a full 12-hour solo shift with kids on 4 hours of sleep while feeling like someone punched me in the gut, and having to make frequent dashes to the bathroom. I had no choice but to adapt and perservere, because, despite all the feedback from my body to just lie down and sleep, I was forced to continue my duties and defend the children from the dangers of the home and vice-versa. I haven’t had many days like this, this one was by far the worst, and I expect that there will be many more like it in the future.

Adaptations

I’ve been pleasantly surprised by how well the two of us parents, who really don’t want more than just want a quiet weekend at home watching TV in our flannah buhjammas, have adapted to a life of constant demands on our attention, little sleep, and incredibly little down time.

That’s not to say that it’s been perfect, oh ho, no. But I thought it would be rougher than it has been. More fights, more thrown dishes, more nights spent on the couch (her, not me). I think we’re doing pretty good, considering. I think we are, anyway. :)

Rewards?

I guess I should acknowledge that health (big picture health, not the sneezing, pooping, or barfing, small-scale health), a functioning refrigerator containing good food, and a roof over our heads is reward enough, right? Yeah, okay.

But secretly, I’m hoping that the promises that parents of children of close ages have made, that the first year is hell but the rest are great, come true. That would be very nice. Long-term, being rewarded with good kids and a nice life would just about do it for us.

It’s hard to keep that long view in perspective. The poop-laden, screechy here-and-now is sometimes a bit too much to take.