Tuesday, September 14, 2010
Yep, I'm tired. Wanna make something of it?
This cartoon is my life right now. Even though I have 2 kids, it perfectly depicts my life (my 2 can feel like 4 sometimes, and I have more than double the dogs shown in it anyway!) Lately I've been really hard on myself. I'm really tired. Stressed out. Whiny. I keep telling myself to buck up, pull it together and be the fantastic mom I always knew I would be. Then the other night I was reading a blog where a woman mentioned that she had 6 kids in 6 years. I chuckled to myself and thought "I hear you. I had 2 kids in under 2 years!" Then I realized: I had TWO kids. In UNDER TWO years. No wonder I'm tired!! 1 year and 9 months after bringing home our daughter, we brought home our son. Parenting older children is a little different than parenting a newborn. It's like learning how to swim by being thrown in the deep end of the pool. So yeah, I'm ALLOWED to be tired. I've been a mom for only 2 years. It's ridiculous to think I'd have this motherhood thing down perfectly. My kids are happy, clean, well fed, educated, and secure. That's something to be happy about, rather than looking at all my failings. It's been a difficult year to boot. My hubby was gone to the Middle East for the first 1/2 of the year. Then as soon as he came home, we met, and brought home our 8-year-old son. We've faced a myriad of problems in getting our son the healthcare he needs, and we've had to deal with a lot of bureaucrats along the way. Under normal circumstances, getting used to parenting (and homeschooling!) 2 kids at once would be tough, but when you add the other stressors, I think I'm allowed to be tired! The problem is, when you adopt, there are a lot of people watching you. Of course there are the social workers, that's not such a big deal. The big deal is all the people you know. Many are watching because they're contemplating adoption, and some are watching out of curiosity concerning this whole adoption thing. Unfortunately, some are also watching and waiting for you to fall flat on your face, so they can say "I told you so!" That's a lot of pressure on an adoptive family who are trying to wade through issues of attachment and adjustment. I feel like I always have to have a giant smile on my face and tell everyone how incredibly wonderful EVERYTHING is. That's just not true. I LOVE my kids, but adopting older children (and by older, I'm referring to any child older than newborn) is very challenging at times. I'm okay with that. I know God has called me to this. I guess my fear is that other people aren't okay with it. I'm worried someone will see how hard this is sometimes and decide not to help a hurting child. I'm scared people who are unfamiliar with adoption, when they see our family's imperfections, will blame it all on adoption, and wag their tongues about it. I hate that when I'm having a rough day sometimes, I find out someone's been telling other people that I clearly got in over my head. I fear that if my family doesn't appear perfect, that people who have been looking for a reason to treat my children differently, will pounce on it. We're doing okay though. My kids are happy. They're healthy. They enjoy life. I enjoy them. Yeah, I'm tired. What mom isn't? No, they're not always perfectly behaved. What child is? So I've decided to care less about what other people think. If someone decides not to adopt because it holds challenges, then I would have to say their heart isn't in the right place to do so anyway. If someone is judging that I'm in over my head or I wasn't cut out for motherhood because I'm tired and overwhelmed at times, they can go...well, never mind, but suffice to say, despite my love for animals, it applies to the horse they rode in on too. And if someone decides to treat my children poorly, they should think twice, because this Mama Bear isn't in the mood to take prisoners right now. Tongues can wag until they fall off. I've decided I don't care anymore. I love my family, and I'm so happy with the way it is. Before the beginning of time, God chose these children as mine, and me for their Mama. That's good enough for me. I may be tired, but I'm happy. The only thing I need right now is encouragement...not wagging tongues. Hi, I'm Laura. I'm tired, overwhelmed, I occasionally totally blow it in motherhood, and I'm completely imperfect. But it's okay. God's working amazing things in my life and the lives of my family members. He is good. All the time.