still breathing.

It's been nearly a month since my last post, and I don't really know how to catch up on anything that's gone on over the past few weeks, except to say the kids are well adjusted to summer with their tanned skin and chlorine-damaged hair, and I don't think they have the slightest clue that I am sinking in my imaginary pool called life while they remain afloat in their real-life pool.

Guys, I'm sinking. In fact, there are moments I feel I am stuck at the bottom with my arms outstretched, hoping someone will just pull me up for a bit of air. But even when I reach the surface, I don't last long; something pulls me down. The odd-number children have been hard for me. 1, 3, and now 5. Mya was hard because she was the first, and I had no idea what the heck I was doing. Elle was hard because I was still recovering from severe depression after a miscarriage and a colicky newborn. And now Timmy is proving to stretch me yet again to a new level. We haven't found our groove yet, and obviously school being let out just weeks after his birth has not helped.

I thought a quick trip to my parents' house would allow the girls time to swim and play all day long, but I did not realize the damage it would do to my tired, fragile mind. Do not travel with a newborn alone. Just don't. It's hard, even with the best help. But we are home again, and I am trying to keep my game face on all day so the girls don't notice my inner distress, but that too is taxing, and it seems to explode out of me just as the kids go to bed. Poor Tim. Poor me. We have hardly touched since Timmy was born. It takes everything in me just to be touched all day that by the time night arrives, I sit alone on the couch while he sits on the chair, wondering what he can do to ease my ever-growing burdens and distress. It is a phase of our marriage we know well because it has happened with the addition of each new baby, but it doesn't mean that we know how to navigate it at all because well, we do better when we are on the same couch, and not in different spaces. But truth be told, I'm just not ready to be on the same couch yet. He knows it, and it makes him ache. I see it in the way he looks at me, but I know he knows this phase will pass, and soon we will be normal again.

I may have a touch of postpartum depression. I see no shame in admitting that. If not depression, then I'd call it an overwhelming sense that life is bigger than me at the moment. I can't get ahead. I can't even get back to square one, and that in itself drives my controlled brain into a state of chaos. So I'm not sure if it's the lack of control, the constant feeling that I'm not enough or a touch of postpartum that makes my heart ache at night, but it is there, and I wish it would leave.

But enough about me. Thinking too much about one's self is never good for anyone. ;) The kids are loving summer. They no longer look like my children at all with their golden brown skin. Someone approached Mya a few weeks ago and just started speaking Spanish. She looked confused at them and pointed to me and said, "I don't speak Spanish, but my mom over there does." The man looked my way and smiled, probably thinking "I'm sure that blonde girl speaks Spanish." Haha. V and Elle have nearly completed their swim lessons and have regained the confidence they had last year in the water. Elle's teacher says she's water safe, but that doesn't stop me from having complete anxiety any time we are around water because she's 3, and you just never know. Sometimes it's easier having kids in floaties. Timmy has pretty much morphed into a giant over the past 3 weeks. He ate his former self and maybe a little bit of his sisters as well. They seem to be losing weight by swimming each day, and he continues to pack it on the cheeks and thighs. I've never had a chunky baby before so every morning I wake up and look at him I can hardly believe I'm creating him. I'll try and post pictures of everyone soon. I need to find time between my first job--being a wife/mom/housekeeper and my second job--editor to upload my pictures. But hopefully I'll catch up this week. Hopefully.

Even though life is stretching me thin--I find so much joy with the kids. When they're not on my nerves this summer, I am absolutely loving them. They are so good to me and to each other. They constantly make me laugh with what they say or do. And it is treat to be with them. I love each of them so much, and the more I live, the more I realize they are going to help me become someone great.

1 comment :

  1. Man, I'm sorry Janine, I sure wish you lived closer so I could at least come over and just hang out with you for a bit... girl time helps right? I can only imagine how hard 5 little ones would be, and I can't believe you dared travel alone with all your kids, you are braver than I. I hope you get on top soon, I know you will eventually because you always do and then I sit in awe of all you seem to accomplish in a day. Call me if you need. I don't know if talking is helpful or not. Just know I'm thinking of you!


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