Facebook, instagram, twitter, whatever it is. It’s where we put the best. It is our face to the world, our portrayed lives, our facade if you will. It is filled with smiling children and parents. They are enjoying gorgeous sunsets and eating gelato. The children are wearing smocked dresses with matching bows and even their bloomers are monogrammed. There are days when I can say “oh how cute” and mean it. There are days, like today, when I look at those pictures and read those posts and I feel that it is a direct insult and that those mothers were sending those pictures directly to me just so I could see how I compare. Now obviously I know that is ridiculous but it does cross my mind. As I clean the litterbox and countertops, I can vision Paris, the beach, the pinterest perfect birthday party. Oh thank you facebook.
I read blogs in which people are feeding their family of 19 on like $45 a week. Their produce is grown, handpicked, and organic. Not only that…..they already put the extras in their pantry for winter. They have their peaches in jars that have the word “peaches” nicely written on chalkboard vinyl……so as not to confuse them with the organic apricots, I am sure. I’ve been doing a budget around here. Yep. I have figured out that my family can eat for about $5 an hour. That’s right. My peaches are eaten by the pounds around here.
An article came up today that mentioned all of the things that you should start doing as a family on week nights. I scrolled through it while having a totally separate conversation about why we couldn’t go outside in 95 degree weather. I kept searching for the “eat, do homework, bathe, go to bed” entries but never found them. Apparently, I need to do a game night once a week. I should go for dessert with each child individually (obviously written by a parent with one child) once a week. It would be nice if you would stop at the park on the way home from school with a prepared snack for a picnic. WHAT? Who, pray tell (quoting my mamaw here), is going to iron the clothes for the next day, cook the meal, clean the dishes, check the homework, bathe, wash hair, and do a load of laundry.
Seriously…….I look around and I just think I should call in a refill of an old prescripton for lexapro. Because you see around here…..what had happened was……Most days I feel like we survive. We just get it done. There are a few exceptions but mostly we are just hanging in there somewhere between refereeing and comforting the littles, listening to the latest guitar piece, and trying to keep up with whereabouts of the other. Our kids wear clean clothes. They eat healthy-ish meals. We (meaning Henry) reads to the kids. They get a bath every.single.day. They know we love them. We do love them so much. But most days……I finally sit down after they have gone to bed and I think how horribly, insanely, ginormously I messed up that day. I said things in haste. I didn’t say them because of fatigue. I beat myself up daily because I’m just not doing it good enough. Not good enough by the fake standards that I see all around me.
Today is a new day around here. I’m working really hard to just be real. I want to embrace our life. It is so far from perfect but it is really good. I have NOTHING to complain about. I am so thankful for do-overs, for grace, for forgiveness. I have to remember that I was given this life and that I am the best candidate for this position.
I burned the chocolate chip cookies while writing this…..but they were home made!