There was a time, not too long ago, like say August, that I could barely stand my children. Let me clarify, I love each child entirely and enjoy moments with each child. I however did not like their collective effect on me. I did not like the Mt. Vesuvius Mother I became at times. And I often looked at my children with disdain when the one child asked me the same question for the fourth time while the other two fought in the not so far distance. I was tired, all the time, and I was quick-tempered with my kids many times. I didn’t like this woman I was. Why did Mommy, without warning, slam her hand on the table and tell us all to be quiet? Why did she storm out of the kitchen? Why did she slam her door? Yes, I have to admit, I did all these things. Because I was beyond tired. I could not handle the unending demands of three little children. So I made sure to have time to myself, I scheduled regular date nights with Anthony, I made sure I had a break of some sort so I would be refreshed and renewed for my children. And this renewal would last 15 minutes until they were screaming and fighting again.
While sitting at dinner last night I had a realization: THAT Mommy hadn’t reared her ugly, tired, short-tempered face in a few days, a few weeks even. I quickly reflected on the past few weeks and realized we had had a record setting run of temper-tantrum free evenings. I’m not so exhausted that I have nothing left to give and honestly exhaustion is the root of all evil. Even though I find myself on the floor of Oliver’s bedroom most mornings I’m somehow not tired, not like I was. My evenings have now become something beautiful, it has truly become enjoyable family time. Now I won’t mislead, of course there will always be moments, like getting through first grade math homework without making Lucas cry. But now when Penny asks me to help her with her pajamas instead of insisting she do it herself because she’s a big girl I do it because I can.