If you see my husband, tell him I said Hi, and I’ll see him next weekend. Spring sports are reving up. So are scout events and end of school year activities. With two kids, we were able to look at the calendar, and identify one evening (or sometimes two) where we knew we’d have free time to see each other, interact with the kids and decompress midweek.
Five kids means a minimum of five activities going on during the week. This week, we have (starting today) Sunday school , Girl Scout Sunday , Baseball clinic , a movie date , a grandson’s birthday movie activity, basketball club , Boy Scouts, county commissioner’s meeting , faith formation , Dominoes club , Daisy meeting, Girl Scout meeting , first communion parents meeting, cub scouts , a Girl Scout ice cream social, a soccer tournament, volunteer dinner for grownups , five nights of middle school baseball practice, five nights of middle school track practice, the senior english Macbeth project, a doctor’s appointment, statewide assessments and oh yeah, I have two jobs to help round out the fun. I’m pretty sure we have a couple of other meetings, commitments that I have forgotten about, but you get the general idea. My husband and I are rarely in house let alone the same room at the same time. I woke him up early this morning so that before I took half the crew to Sunday School, we could coordinate our schedules for the week. We grimly realized that we may not actually see each other (other than to say goodnight as we collapse each evening) during the week.
Its strange, this whirlwind life we lead. A (childess) friend remarked the other day that my crazy schedule is precisely why she doesn’t have children. I envied her for about three seconds… and then I felt a little sad for her. I may be running constantly, coordinating events, jumping from one activity to the next, ensuring dinners are eaten, homework completed and teeth brushed, but then I also get to hold little hands. I get to hear the greatful prayers of two young boys who never knew what a stable life was until they got here. I get to dream with my daughter about going away to college next year. I get to talk to my teenage son about Faith as he prepares for Confirmation. I get to hear the corny jokes that only ten year old boys think are hilarious and I get to do it day in and day out. I do not have wild party nights with friends, but I didn’t have them before I had kids, I didn’t want them. I wanted this.
I wanted to play Uno, listen to trombone practice and hollar at the top of my lungs when five kids (and a husband) step over cat throw-up on the stairs. Ok, maybe the last one I could live without, but I’ll still take it. It is part of what makes us a family. The dirty socks, the baseball cleats , shinguards, and spilled ovaltine. Its part of who I am deep in my soul. Thank God, its part of my husband too. The cooking for an army, the running errands the remembering schedules.. he really is very good at it. When I lay down to sleep each night this week, I’ll thank God for all these messy people, the constant activity , the laughter and tears which go with all of it and the guy who helps ground me each night as we collapse together into our bed. This is neither better nor worse… it is family.