It’s Saturday night and I’m already feeling a mixture of cabin fever, exhaustion, and just plain irritability about everything in sight. I’ve worked from home too many times to count this year with both girls (and sometimes Ronnie) stuck at home with me due to sicknesses and weather. As grateful as I am that’s it’s an option for me and I don’t have to use precious vacation time when things like that come up, I’m frankly just sick of it at this point!
It’s next to impossible to focus on work when Layla is asking for a snack every 30 minutes. And in between her snacks she needs me to turn on a new DVR show. And if I don’t get her a snack she helps herself, which means finding her in the kitchen digging at a jar of almond butter with a knife. I can’t play with her since I’m trying to get work done on my computer, so she keeps herself busy, but not in necessarily safe or appropriate ways.
- I have found her in the bathroom using every single wet wipe and half a bottle of foaming hand soap proudly saying “I’m cleaning Momma!”
- We spotted oily spray marks up the wall next to the stairway and on her bedroom walls, only to discover the empty can of olive oil nonstick spray on the floor in her room.
- Most of the walls, doors and trim in our house (that haven’t been chewed by our dogs) have original artwork by Layla on them, via whatever medium she could get her hands on.
She’s ruined my makeup brushes, emptied the entire contents of her dresser drawers immediately after I put all her clean laundry away, and almost lost my Oura Ring only a month after I got it. For every bit of adorable, hilarious spunk, she’s got equal parts curious, nonstop tornado.
I know that if I was present with her more I could focus that energy into fun activities. She loves jigsaw puzzles and in the evenings we do a lot of them together. She also loves to count things and read books and practice her letters. When we engage with her she’s not constantly asking for snacks, but when I’m working from home, I am stuck between trying to keep her out of my hair but also safely not making a boatload of mess for me to clean up later. The other day I was on a conference call while sweeping the kitchen floor. It’s like a no-win situation that just makes me feel like I’m failing at both parenting and my job at the same time!
Working from home with the kids here also means that we are making all the messes that go along with living here, but I don’t have the leisurely time to pick up after everyone each meal or stay on top of all the puzzles and random toys that get strewn about. So by the end of the day, the house is a total disaster and I’m overwhelmed with it and just want to run away screaming.
This past week has been extra draining due to the tummy bugs going around (Ronnie now has it), and the liver cleanse/detox I’ve started, which also means no caffeine or wine to help me cope. I’ve been so tired and irritable that dealing with the cluster of our mess this week has been too much to keep up with and I’m stumbling around, angrily kicking people’s shoes across the kitchen floor (since of course shoes belong in the kitchen), and grumbling about how the dishes don’t do themselves and the living room is not a dirty laundry basket and NO, sippy cups are not toys so you can’t use a half dozen of them as bottles for your stuffed animals!
I hate to say it, but I’m kinda already looking forward to Monday so I can get out of the house, back to work, and in a place I am only supposed to focus on what I’m being paid to do. It’s so much easier than being a mom and managing a household. I dream of having the energy to work full time while also keeping things balanced at home, but right now I feel like home is just a giant juggling act with flaming knives. And somewhere in between catching and dodging knives I’m trying to fit in things that I love to do so I don’t go completely insane!
The only hope I cling to is remembering when Skyler was this age and that in a matter of years she became a much more self sufficient, tidy person that can do her own laundry and clean the bathrooms. She can have friends over and mostly entertain herself, get her own snacks and wipe her own butt. I do miss her sometimes, and feel like I spend an unfair amount of time with Layla, but I think it’s par for the course as she finds her independence.
I should caveat all this with the fact that I’m writing this on day 6 of my 21 day liver cleanse and sometimes during a detox, things can feel worse before they feel better. Life is the same as it has been for awhile, but despite being on point with my nutrition, I’m just not handling it as gracefully as I have in recent months. I’m hoping that I can just vent about this here, let the detox run its course, and soon I will be back to more contentedly juggling my beautiful mess. In the meantime, if I could get a quick beach vacation and a cleaning fairy to stop by, that would sure help!