Twinadoes. They are more challenging then I thought. Gone are the sweet newborn days of sleepless nights and countless snuggles. Here are the days of jumping off the staircase and laughing at mommy when she says no.
Before kids, I never knew if I would be cut out to be a mom. To say it's stressful is an understatement; but, wow am I surprised by how much I love these little munchkins. I'm planning on doing a longer post when the girls turn two on how the last two years have shaped and molded and refined me. But to write a traditional Thanksgiving post about the joys of motherhood seemed cliche to me.
No, I'm more into honesty and transparency. Motherhood is hard. I constantly feel like I am treading water. But I'm grateful for the water. I am.
Recently, Josh and I were talking about what kind of parents we are. He's an amazing dad, and he exclaimed, "We're awesome!" My response was more my pragmatic style, "We're barely surviving."
I wish I was the enteral optimist ready to get out of bed and take my girls on an adventure, but lately, they've been sick. So they're fussy. And now one month from two I am seeing foreshadows of just how insane the terrible 2's could be. So I'm hard on myself. I wish I finger painted with my girls more. (Actually, not really - that's super messy.) I wish I had the stamina to take them to the ocean every day to run around. (But when we do get to the beach it's a sweet moment in time.) I wish I read novels to them and excerpts from the Economist. I used to do this when they were tiny babies. Now, I'm lucky to make it through half a Dr. Suess book.
But you know what I am grateful for? Their amazing school. They can understand anything you say in Spanish or English. They are learning new words in both languages daily. They know how to say please and thank you and mas. I can't take credit for any of these things- their amazing teachers who are kind and patient and brilliant taught them these things.
I'm also grateful for Emma's team of therapists. Her OT, PT and Early Interventionist that patiently work with her every week and get her to take steps that we have been praying and praying and praying for. I don't know how they do it, but I'm learning so much from watching them slowly break down her fears and build up her confidence.
I'm grateful for my husband. Who comes home at just the right moment during the 5 o'clock witching hour and gives me a much needed break to pause, return emails, jump on a conference call, prep dinner, etc. He understands the insanity of staying home full time and simultaneously working full time. He was home doing the same during the girls first year, but is now at an office this second year. And I miss him...all the time. Because he balances out the preconceived expectations I put on myself and makes me realize it will be okay- our girls are going to thrive simply because we love them with everything we have.
And I'm grateful for the chaos. Because when the house is quiet and still, or I'm gone a work trip, all I want to do is look at videos of my family and give them a big squeeze. So I'm grateful. And I'm trying to be kinder, more patient and not so hard on myself. I'm also learning my boundaries. I've turned off notifications on my phone because I just don't care anymore if I'm keeping up with the Kardashians or whoever is en vogue. (Are the Kardashians still around? I don't know what's in or out anymore.) I don't have time to engage in mommy wars because the truth is we are all just doing the best we can and the world needs less judgement and more encouragement. I'm trying to Skype with my family more because I miss them and wish we could see them more than a couple times a year. I'm trying to take my girls on more walks and find laughter in the food fights, instead of messes. I'm trying. And for that, I'm thankful- because it's the best I can do right now, in this moment.
So thank you. Thank you for reading. Thank you for encouraging me. Thank you for laughing at this crazy life. Enjoy your turkey day and mommas, try to squeeze in a hot cup of coffee for yourself today - you deserve it.