Ah, summer. It’s so bittersweet. I love this time at home with my girls, after all, I wanted so desperately to be a SAHM, and yet everyday I want so desperately to escape. So goes the call of mothers everywhere: Calgon, take me away! (Oops, I may have just dated myself.)
Let me start by saying that I realize that I have GOOD kids. Really. They are absolutely amazing little sweethearts. I do know this. I know that there behavior is typical of all children, however, this does not make it any less annoying *wink*. They are burning me out, man. I walk from room to room watching all of my hard work unraveled in seconds. I constantly feel like our apartment is in an undulating state of chaos ranging from YIKES! to complete and utter squalor. Ugh. If it didn’t affect my mental health so much, I would just say “fuck it” and wait until 30 min before Hubs came home to have a marathon cleaning session.
On top of that, my girls have finally fallen into the realm of true siblings. As twins, they’ve almost always gotten along fairly well, but this summer. Oh, this summer. This summer they are constantly fighting and hitting and doing things JUST to annoy each other make one another squeal and scream. Ugh. It is really hard to make an adjustment to working 7 days per week 24 hours a day. And anyone who knows my kids’ sleep issues will know I MEAN 24 hours.
What is a mother to do (besides drink heavily)? It is very hard for me to regulate my emotions when I am entrenched in other people’s negative moods; that’s just how I am. My ability to truly feel other peoples emotions is what makes me a great empathizer, but that means I’m like a sponge constantly soaking up the filth around me. I am trying to build myself a tiny little forcefield; a place shield to keep out all the negative. I tell myself, “Not my circus, not my monkeys”, but when someone else’s monkeys are shitting all over the yard it’s hard not to step in it. You know?
At my wits end I devised a plan. If my kids are driving me nuts & driving each other nuts then there has to be other mothers who’s kids are driving them nuts. Maybe, just maybe, the answer lies in unity. I have tried it before, playdates that is, and it seemed that there was still so much interrupting mothers about so-and-so leaving someone out or some other such thing that it never really seemed like a break. Maybe it would work to do a kid swap. Not a full swap, but a partial. You take one of mine and I’ll take one of yours, type of thing.
There is a couple we hang with who has girls similar in age to ours and similar in attitude. Their oldest is active and rambunctious just like our Bear while the younger is content to play and be imaginative, able to entertain herself for hours much like our Baggins. So I called up Jessie and suggested we give it a try. And you know what? WILD SUCCESS! I had the older kids leaving me feeling like I had ADHD due to their need to change activities every 20 minutes or so, but they played great together, no fighting or whining, and it even gave me time to get a few things done around here! AWESOME! Better yet, when the girls were reunited they actually had something to talk about and seemed to get along- well, at least until we made it to the top of the stairs.
Regardless, you can bet we will be doing this again soon and I would encourage all SAHMs out there to think about giving it a try.
Would you be willing to do a kid-swap?
If not, would you just take mine?!