Wednesday, February 12, 2014

How Much is Too Much?

I go through seasons in life where I try to take on too many things at once. I have a real problem with signing up for, RSVP-ing for, and piling things on my to-do list in bulk...all at the same time. Typically when I do this to myself things begin to crumble in front of me. I'm not saying that's what causes illness in my children - it's definitely what makes ME sick from time to time - but I sometimes think God steps in and says, "Time out." We definitely had a time out yesterday as I might have changed 17 diapers over the course of the day and we were stuck at home.

I don't claim to be as busy as other people. I don't know how working moms do it. And that's NOT in a bratty, "That's why I stay home," way. I just don't know how they do it. When do they find the time to clean and cook? I'm exhausted just playing with my kids all day, but working moms work {and LOTS of my best friends play with OTHER PEOPLE'S kids all day} and then come home and get millions more items marked off their to-do list than I do. This is just a note about a season of my life. I am NOT trying to sound judgmental.

So what have I piled on my plate recently?

Last week I was gone from home two nights. I know that doesn't sound like a ton - and it's not - but I like to be with my people and it is a disaster to try to get myself ready and fix a meal for my family when I have to be somewhere at 6pm. It's just not a great time at our house. But last week I rsvp-ed YES for a party {and I was SO GLAD that I went, but it doesn't make it easier} and I played Bunco with a group of friends. I think Eddie is trying to retaliate this week because he's been at his office from 9-11pm two nights this week.

I'm currently reading five books. I KNOW. When I'm stressed out over what is going on around me, I can't sit still with a book. So to compensate for that I'll read a chapter of one, pick up another and read a chapter, and then before I know it I'm reading FIVE at one time. Eddie has pointed out that I'd probably read faster if I stuck to one, but I can't.

{And yes...I know it is hilarious that I'm writing on the topic of busy-ness while reading a book called Hands Free Mama which downs the glorification of busy-ness and PUT DOWN THE PHONE AND THE COMPUTER AND THE LIST, DARN IT!}

THE birthday party. Thankfully I've only invited 14 people {including us!} to this event because it would be way too much to try to squeeze it all in otherwise. On Friday I'm hoping to decorate and bake cupcakes and cookies. And we probably ought to decide what we're going to serve for lunch. Party prep was put on hold Tuesday. I neeeeeeed to go to the grocery store and Walmart.

Going out of town. Why oh why when my daddy called and asked if we wanted to go to Orlando didn't I decide to change the party date? Who knows. We're leaving late afternoon post-party to head to Orlando for a few days. We're taking in SeaWorld and Legoland this time - leave tips in the comments if you have them! - and we're all very excited. But having to be READY TO LEAVE when the party is over feels quite stressful to me. I've been packing for two days - a little bit at a time. So far I have the boys shorts, t-shirts, jammies, and bathing suits {indoor pool?} packed. I've started grocery shopping and I've pulled a few things out that we'll need. Breaking it up seems to have helped a bit. {And the day after we get back I stupidly scheduled Will's well-check at 8:45. It's the day after we return to town, Will GOES TO SCHOOL that day, and James can't be dropped off until 8:45 which means I had to make other arrangements to get him to school. What was I thinking? I wasn't!}

Running. I exercised Monday {and holy moly do my hamstrings hurt from the squats that I did!} but because of the stomach bug disaster that occurred Tuesday I wasn't able to do anything until 9:30 when both boys were asleep - so that didn't happen. Ugh. Maybe I need to make the switch to 6:30AM and just get it done before they're awake?

I'm working on a big project for church that's taking some time and some brain power. I've pow-wowed a bit with our pastors and now I need to put it into action, but I was smart enough to know I needed to WAIT to schedule the meeting with my committee until after next week when life calms down a teensy tiny bit. We're also joining a small group and we have an initial meeting for that tomorrow. {And I may be whining a LOT here, but the initial meeting is to decide when to meet. COME ON. Let's email and figure it out instead of meeting. We'll chat for 20 minutes and then hem and haw for 20 minutes and it's Will's birthday and I need to LEAVE.}

How do you all manage it all? The basics don't even get done in our home - the cleaning, etc. - and then you add in the rest of those things and life is just BUSY. I'd love to hear how you balance it. Do you get up super early and take care of business? Exercise when the kids are sleeping? Run errands with your kids or without? I definitely don't think there's a right or wrong way, I think we're all doing what we can. Enlighten me on how your family runs!


Unknown said...

Whoa Lauren, there is ALOT going on. First, I am a working mom and it is crazy. You have to be uber-scheduled to get things done. I feel like a failure sometimes when I look around at a messy house but hey, the kids are fed and homework done so on those days, its enough.It all gets done on weekends also so that limits fun on weekends sometimes. I love Legoland and did a couple of posts on it if you want to check them out. It's amazing and oh so fun. I'm not sure if the water park is open yet but I'm sure you can enjoy the hotel pools, we are having great weather!!

Anna Catherine said...

Oh my word! Give yourself some slack! I'm sure that in 10 years when you look back on these days you won't remember the messy house and the boys definitely won't! You'll remember all the fun times and the wonderful memories you've made!

pcb said...

Obviously I'm past the littles-in-the-house stage, but I remember well how it felt to work all day and then begin my other full-time job when I got home. It really got ridiculous when they became involved in after school stuff; I was never home long enough to get things done.

Here's one crazy thing I used to do every once in a while to catch up (and it was when my kids were older and I could sleep in on Saturday without worrying about them): On a Thursday night, I'd fix a big pot of coffee and stay up all night doing laundry and whatever else had to get done. I could make it through work on Friday, but definitely went to bed early and slept late. I don't recommend it, but it worked for me.

Lauren said...

I am with Anna! Cut yourself some slack! I think you hold yourself to too high of standards and put lots of pressure on yourself to be and do it all! You are organized and a good Mommy and want everything in order but maybe this week a glass of wine or two would be good til you catch up!?! ;) Your boys have been sick, yall on the road and its a certain little munchkins birthday! The past few/next week will be crazy but after that, you can get back into your routine and your house will be in order and life will settle! We go through crazy seasons and in the midst of it, I wonder how this will all get done...then I look back and somehow, some way, it did!! I occasionally hire a maid too when I just need some breathing room and to get my feet back under me. Best $$$ spent and really allows me to catch up and focus on my little family. Hang in there and have fun with all of the little things going on!