I couldn't count how many times I've been told "You look tired" or "You don't look like you're feeling well" or "Having a rough day today?" since being a momma. It's usually after a chaotic morning trying to get lunches packed and my girls to the sitter before my first appointment. Meanwhile, I've forgotten to pack my lunch AGAIN, and certainly didn't have time to put my makeup on, which my 3 year old will point out when loading into the van. "Mommy, why don't you have your lipstick on?" She loves lipstick. Seeing her eyes light up when she's choosing a color for me to put on her is a favorite thing of mine. It's usually dark pink with sparkles. And her love for lip color has certainly rubbed off on me, although most of the time, it's just plain 'ol cherry chapstick for this girl. I can remember before my babies came (barely) still rushing out the door to get to work on time. Why was I rushing? What in the heck was I doing? I must've been watching some compelling episode of Dawson's Creek before I took an hour long shower and only had to pack lunch for myself. Man, if I had only known the leisure of that!
Most of the time, I respond to those "tired" comments with, "Oh, I don't have any makeup on" or "It was just a crazy morning" or sometimes no response at all, just a nod. Knowing I do look tired, I am exhausted, and every morning is unpredictable and usually a circus act getting out the door. Now expecting our third baby, some of the comments have gone to "Wow", and "What are you going to do with 3??" or "You think you're tired now!" Again, I respond with a shoulder shrug or "We'll make it work." I mean, we are not the only people in the world to have 3 kids and we will be fine. But you better believe, it's totally unsettling knowing we'll be outnumbered. My husband and I have been talking about getting another van. Who drives two vans?? Love my van, probably too much, but we can't have two vans. More talk about my oldest being enrolled in preschool this year, while my toddler and newborn will be shipped to my sister's, selling our house, finding/buying a new house before November, saving for my time off, my maternity leave falling at my busiest time of year, etc leaves my head spinning and me thinking we are crazy. I'm even more crazy for going back to work after this baby.
We went to Gatlinburg this week with my in laws and it was a nice getaway, definitely better than expected. This was the first time traveling a long distance with Callie since she's been potty trained and first for Maci period. We had a fun week of arcades, shopping, the aquarium, and rides. Other than one evening of nausea, nothing catastrophic on the pregnancy symptoms either. But there were some things we had to work around. Our cabin was 3 1/2 stories with two flights of wooden stairs. Too wide for a baby gate, which we didn't bring anyway, and my Maci couldn't stay off of them. Her little legs are banged up pretty good from crawling all over them, despite our attempts to keep her off. That in and of itself was a feat. Also, we had to work our schedules around nap time, while everyone else was able to gallivant around town as they wished. Callie slept in our bed, because she was too scared to sleep alone, so even though it was a king size bed, we had feet or her booty in our backs for three nights. Packing for two adults, a toddler, and 3 year old....well, we might as well have moved in. Maci was in a stroller a lot, so she would get grumpy quickly and it was a fight to keep her contained most of the time. Callie was run ragged after all the activities and chose to talk mostly in her most high pitch whiney voice, while only listening to half of what we were telling her. After getting home Thursday, being able to relax a little, and letting our contained children run around in circles, we met our in laws for lunch Sunday for my husband's late birthday meal.
We came straight from church. There was a 30 minute wait so I stayed in the van with Maci screaming hysterically to get out. We walked in to find everyone had their seat. I wrestled Maci into the highchair while Callie clung to me and pulled on my sweater. Maci began to scream for milk for about 15 minutes while Callie ran around the table, trying to sit anywhere but in her seat. I was trying to pour another milk into the kids cup, when it slipped, knocked over, and poured all into my lap. I was literally ringing milk out of my skirt and wiping the table and floor with napkins the rest of the meal. Chocolate milk mind you. We somehow made it home to nap and I laid in bed thinking nothing. Feeling nothing but a massive headache and wanting nothing more than to fall asleep. I rested my hand on my lower belly, somehow communicating with this growing baby inside me, "Hope you're ready for all of this."
The thing is, I don't need or want sympathy. While I appreciate the concern and concerned comments, I don't need the "Poor Felicia." Yes I am tired. I work long hours, have two small children, and am fighting nausea with my third pregnancy in-between hilighting clients. We are very involved in our church and love it, but it's another thing we're committing our time to. So we have crazy week days, followed by busy weekends and I couldn't think of anything else we'd rather be doing. Yes, you'll probably hear me complain sometimes about there not being enough hours in the day or enough Tylenol in my purse. And believe me when I say, getting ready in the mornings makes me want to bang my head in the wall most days. I may look glazed over, out of it, and even sick. I may even look like I'm not happy at times. But please know, that couldn't be further from the truth.
Sometimes when I call Adam in the middle of our crazy days apart, I'll ask him how he's doing and he usually follows up with "Living the dream." I smile slightly and chuckle a little, but it's a great reminder that we are doing just that. We have two beautiful daughters the Lord has given us. Two great jobs. A place to call home and a pillow to lay our sleepy heads on after our long days. A fabulous church and wonderful friends to call on when in need of some time away. The best family around, who help us with our children weekly. While I discipline, yell more than needed, and rub my temples often, I am grasping for time to slow down. I am soaking up the snuggles, stealing kisses when I can, and praying for my babies daily. I wanted nothing more than to be a mother when I was younger and the Lord has given me that gift tenfold. Three children will be tough, but I am blessed to have godly women and families around me who are raising children too. And if you're at a restaurant and see me fighting with my children or dragging one out the door or cleaning up another mess, just say a prayer for me that I appreciate even those moments. And if a comment does find it's way to our lips, do me a favor and make it a positive one. "You're doing a great job." or "Your children love you more than anything." Or even just a pat on the back. This momma is tired, but my heart is full, and my joy is complete in my Jesus.