Haggard, that is. That’s been the general theme around our house for the last few months. It’s been hard to have energy to do much beyond general upkeep (which actually feels like quite a lot).
It began in January, as I entered the second trimester. Shortly after the last round of family left for holiday visits I came down with the flu. It wasn’t the most miserable flu, as the worst of it came and went in a few days. But its residual effects, a racking cough and exhaustion, dragged on. Then it turned into a cold, which Jason and Ian also got. We were out for the entire month.
February looked better. We got the exciting news we were having a girl. I got some of my energy back for a stint and started planning future things. But then Ian got a cold again. And then again. And I felt tired again, a lot of the time. And it seemed we would never resume a normal schedule.
By that point, I realized a few things had to give. What I mean by that is that I called Jason one day at work, muttering a bunch of non-sensical words in between sobs and the phrase “I can’t do it anymore!” I realized I could barely keep up on the dishes or laundry let alone fulfill commitments outside the sphere of our home. I was just too tired.
So, some things went off the schedule and I *tried* not to feel guilty about it. It was hard to admit that I just couldn’t/can’t do everything that I was doing even a few months ago.
Since then I think upkeep has gotten a bit better and I am feeling less stressed, though it still feels like we are surviving, not really thriving. There are days when things get done and days when they don’t. Nights where I sleep well followed by nights where I don’t.
I don’t mean to sound entirely doomsday–there are bright spots in there. Planning for baby girl has been one of them. The bottom drawer of Ian’s dresser is currently hers and I am slowly accruing cute little things that I pick up or have been nice surprise gifts from friends and family. I’m dreaming about how I want to set up Ian’s room to accommodate both him and his sister. I’ve started gathering home birth supplies and making lists of things I want to have prepared post-birth. I love planning.
It has also been fun to see Ian get excited about baby sister. He talks about her every day. He tells me how he will play trucks and build lego houses with her. I found a great book at Value Village called Waiting for Baby, which we read often. A few days ago he said to me “I want baby sister to come out.” I imagine that to him it will feel like an eternity has passed by the time she comes into the world.
Ian is also potty training,which has all-around been a positive experience. It took him a few days to figure it out, but since then he has been doing well. He is very proud of himself when he keeps his undies dry and exclaims “THREE GUMMIES!!!!!” when he goes poopy in the potty. This is followed by picking out his three gummies and telling me what color they are, right before he eats them.
Ian is also doing his first kid’s race on April 17th. He has been training for it. He tells me “Ian race!” as he runs around the house or back home from the park. Jason is running the correlating 10k on the same day, so he’s also training. The other day he took Ian in the BOB out for a run and when they got to the bottom of the hill Ian ran all the way up to our house. I think they will both do fantastic. I, on the other hand, am not training for anything. I’m lucky if I do a kegel or two a day. And yes, I know I need to do more of them.
Speaking of Jason, he is also still tired. He comes home from work and a lot of times finds me waiting for relief from a day with a two-year-old. He is wonderful at playing with Ian and actually likes doing chores, but a man can only handle so much. He implies this when I call him at work and I can practically hear him over the phone rubbing his eyes while he tells me they hurt. He has his burdens.
With all these relatively minor ups and downs, we are hanging in there. We have been pretty healthy over the last few weeks. The weather is looking more like spring. Yesterday I worked in the garden and today we spent some time in the sun at the park with friends. We have family visiting in April, probably the last visits before baby girl comes in June. I am almost in the third trimester, I can’t believe it.
Now that I’ve spent all this time explaining (complaining) about our status quo, I will say that we are blessed. I say this mainly to remind myself. God is taking care of us, and I see Him refreshing me when I become lonely or spiritually dry or have an ungrateful or worried heart. He is gently leading this often ungentle heart.
On this day, a good day, I’m planning future things again, which is always a positive, hopeful sign. I’m thinking about summer–a climbing structure for Ian in our backyard, drinking mojitos, planting some potted flowers, buying sunblock.
Yet I am more aware in this season that it is a day-by-day thing. I don’t know why that is surprising to me. God intends it that way.