This has been a challenging day. Baby has been up much the last two nights, for no real reason I can find, other that just wants to nurse all night, then play. Then she falls SOUND asleep at 6:00 am, just when I should be getting up. I have not been able to get up then, with only 3 hours sleep, so we have been getting a late start on school. Today our septic system backed up, which was inconvenient. So, I dealt with that, instructed the kids to look over their assignment sheets (well worth all the time I spend on them on Friday afternoons), and get busy. I had 5 laundry baskets full of clean, folded laundry to sort, and so on. At 4:00, when my 6yo was leaving for choir, I asked my 6th grader for an update on what he has accomplished today. NOTHING. On one hand, I could see he was tempted to lie, but didn't. Good for him. On the other hand, he deceived me all day by acting as if he was busy every time I checked on him. I was so mad, I didn't know what to do about it. Yelling is a waste of time. So I just said, 'You're in big trouble, as soon as I think of a punishment, I'll let you know." I felt hugely ineffective as a parent, but I was so ticked, I couldn't even think. Since then, I have decided to shut him down til Friday bed time. This means he will do nothing but school work, eat, and sleep. Should he get finished, he'll start on Monday's work. I just get so torn, when it seems that if I stay on top of the kids and their school work, the housework gets behind. I catch up on housework, and the kids take advantage and get behind. I feel the effect of so much darkness on my productivity as well. Once it gets dark, I start to slow down. Since it happens so early, I am literally dragging myself around the rest of the day. Anyway, no one said this is easy, but it is soooo easy to get discouraged. I don't pray enough, and even when I do it's pretty weak and whiney.
My ideal me would be one that would wake up bright eyed, walk down to my icon wall, and spend 15 minutes in prayer. Then get a good work out for 30 minutes, then make breakfast and enjoy a quiet cup of coffee. Then wake the children, have them get dressed and eat, then tidy the house as a cheerful, cooperative team. Then we would start school, the little ones would play quietly at our feet. We then would break for recess, and I would do some quick housecleaning. Then We would cheerfully resume school, and the baby would go down for a nap. We would eat lunch while I read aloud, then the rest of the little kids would go to nap. Baby would continue to sleep. I would begin a healthy, tasty and colorful dinner, that will be done right on time. The children would spend the afternoon finishing school, or following independent persuits of interest. The children would set the table for dinner. Every one would eat it and thank me. Then the children would clean the kitchen while dh and I would have witty and fulfilling conversation. We would play a family game, say family prayers, then the children would retire. Dh and I would have a little more time to ourselves, then go to bed. Oh, I think I forgot to have the baby wake up. Well, she would wake up near the end of the school day, and then go to bed again when the other children do. When she wakes up at 3:00a.m., I will take delight in our one-on-one time, and treasure every moment. I would quickly go back to sleep, and wake at 6:00 am the next day, bright eyed.
Maybe tomorrow I will write about what it's really like here. The comparison of the two certainly explains my discouragement though. This ideal me is so ridiculous, and yet, I still suffer from not meeting this image. What is wrong with me?? I need a reality check, big time.