I haven't been a stay at home mom to two rambunctious kids in a long while, and have never been to three, so it was a culture shock to me when I started full time after I officially lost my job in June. It's a whole new ball game, to have one baby attached to your chest and two others that you can't get to pay attention to you for two whole seconds. The disparity is extreme and hilarious at times, but there have been more than a few days that were taxing on everybody's emotions.
I can't just say mine.
I try to wax poetic every once in a while just to keep myself coherent; unfortunately the lack of sleep and stress of going from a relatively well-off two income family to a one-income family that struggles to pay its bills have left me incoherent at times. I forget even simple words, misspeak frequently, combine words improperly, and online I find my work riddled with confusing typos that I can't always explain. I can stare at an object and stammer in confusion trying to remember what it's called.
This has been my life as of late.
It's more than a little frustrating but I manage well enough when I don't get frustrated - which isn't often. It's really hard to spend your days feeling less like a woman just barely under 30 who has three kids to keep up with and more like an 80 year old fighting off the beginning stages of dementia. I don't take that comparison lightly, either.
So between that, and the fact that most of the days around here have been either too hot to venture outside for long or nice and cool but insanely cloudy and rainy, I think I'm not the only one who has been happy for school starting again.
We just faked spring and summer, really.
I have kicked around the idea of homeschooling the kids for a couple of years now and I keep telling myself I'm going to officially do it, hunker down, find some course materials and fill out the paperwork and make it happen. The downside is that I know I struggle too much with basic things like involved mathematics and the concepts of syntax in English to be a useful and helpful teacher for my children. I realize that public school has its flaws, but I have no doubt that despite being forced to push agendas aimed toward successful test scores, most of the public school teachers are far more able than I to teach my children. I can encourage a love for learning and for them to further explore their interests, but I will be the LAST person on earth effectively teaching them long division.
Never mind, I don't even potato.
I also loved being involved in the extracurriculars at school - and given that I was already an outsider when I was in the musicals and plays and band simply because I was inherently weird, I can't imagine how my children would be treated. It's sad but true: kids can be cruel. I'm actually not worried about them not being very social, but I am incredibly concerned about them being mocked or feeling as if they weren't accepted. In adulthood it's much easier to look back and scoff at the concept of whether or not a few high school kids were willing to open their arms to an outsider, but when you are that outsider, it's much harder to not take personally.
So for now my kids remain in public school, where they seem fairly content. A is in kindergarten and has the same teacher that G did, and G is in second grade. I was worried that since they're at the same school but in different classes that as soon as they were separated A would go into a panic, despite having his "girlfriend" (and undeniably closest friend) in his class with him. Instead, the report home I got when I picked them up was relatively positive: G had a great day, knew a couple of kids from first grade, generally enjoyed himself and likes his teacher. A got sent to the back of the carpet at carpet time because he had no intention of sitting still for ten seconds to be given instructions, and got in trouble a couple of other times for refusing to listen or follow directions. Which is pretty typical for him.
I'm okay with it because for him, that's really not too bad.
Maybe this year will be okay after all.