Sunday, March 18, 2012

Thank You

Did you ever play the Sims back in the day? I did. I was obsessed with the game of keeping all those imaginary people content and well cared for, with the best houses and nicest furniture. I would play for hours sometimes, just trying to get them to make friends or get married. Now, for the record, I have no knowledge of the recent Sims games...I played the original Sims years and years ago.

The game started out nice and slow with a character or two and a house and you went along and added to it all. Better stuff, bigger house, more people. Everyone is happy and taken care of. As you go along more people come, more houses, more stuff. It gets harder to keep everyone happy. It gets harder to keep track of the stuff. Before I knew it, I was barely keeping them all alive.

Sometimes that's what real life feels like to me. Whenever I am in the moment with one thing, in the back of my mind I know what else I should be doing. There is always something else. John is so supportive but he is a fixer. When there is something wrong he wants to make it better and move on. He does not have a brain that forecasts possibilities the way mine does. I can start with one small decision and before I know it, the world has exploded in my brain and we are all dead thanks to the decision I chose.

Ava has a similar brain to mine, it seems. The other day Seth was on his second round of being tested for allergies and he was lying down after the nurses had injected the allergens into his arms. There were little spots of blood that had soaked through the tissue on his arms.

"Oh NO." Ava said. "I don't like blood. Blood makes me think of dying and dying makes me think of Eli and Eli makes me think of Nana and Nana makes me think of Indy and Indy makes me think of Florida and Florida makes me think of Ella and now my day is just ruined!"

I know, kid. I know.

The problem is, it isn't all in my head. Most days it feels like everything I do is taking away from something else. If I hang out with the kids and bake a frozen pizza for dinner I'm sacrificing their nutrition. If I leave them to their own devices while I clean the apartment I feel like I'm neglecting them. If I spend all my time after the kids are in bed at night on homework for school, then I'm not spending any time with John. If I lay on the couch and watch Bones with John all evening I'm neglecting my studies. Most days, I feel like I am barely maintaining; spending a little time with the kids, a little time on the house, a little time on John, and a little time on homework. And a little isn't enough to go around for any of those things.

Parenting, or mothering, really, is such a fine balance. Usually I feel like I am treading water, getting all of us by until things get easier and someone puts more hours in a day. It makes me sad. It's not the parent I want to be, but it's the parent I am.

It's funny; this is not the post that I meant to write today, but it's the post that my fingers have put on the page. It's the post that I've been writing and rewriting in my head for weeks. This blog has become something else I have to do, and that's not what I want it to be. For so long this place was my lifeline. It helped me survive some really tough times in my life.

Not many people get a second chance at this thing, our family, like John and I have. It's important for me to make the most of it. And that means that in this phase of our life, this blog just cannot be the priority that it used to be. I don't mean to be dramatic. I am not going to disappear off the face of the earth. But I need to remove the pressure of updating from my shoulders. I can't do it all, and I need to make sure that the things I'm doing are in my family's best interest. I've removed my ads to make sure that I'm not pressured to write because of ad revenue as well.

The blog won't disappear and I'm sure I will update occasionally. I want each of you readers to know how much you have all meant to me on this journey. I have loved sharing our family with each of you and they way you have all cared for us, a family of strangers on the internet, is amazing to me. From helping to raise money for Seth's surgery to supporting me during my stint as a single parent to being so gracious as we have gone through this reconciliation; I truly believe that I have been lucky enough to have some of the kindest readers on the internet.

Please, feel free to email me for anything at all or to friend me on facebook. My goal is not to sever any relationships I have built here but instead to help me focus more on my family as they are growing up entirely too quickly. I don't want their memories of me to be of a mom staring a a computer screen who is disengaged from them.

Lastly, I always, always, want to hear from anyone who could use a listening ear due to issues I've experienced. If I can do anything at all for others who have lost children, are going through a diagnosis of hearing loss or contemplating cochlear implants, or who are struggling through a separation or divorce, I want to do it. I know that those who reached out to me made me feel less alone in each of those situations, and I want to be able to help others in the same way. I am no expert but I will always listen!

I don't know how to end this post. It feels like the end of an era for sure. Thank you for making it a great one for me.

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