The difference of a day

The tears flowed here yesterday.
I don’t view this time through the eyes of some calm earth mother.
I don’t feel all connected to the earth and at peace with the world.
I feel overwhelmed by the responsibility. The reliance. On me.
Every day is simply a process of survival. A head count at the end to check there were no casualties left behind.
There are things I do to feel grounded. To feel in control of something.
Generally it is cooking, but even that is challenging when you have the Good Child secretly enrol in a gifted and talented accelerated program of toddlerdom.
Don’t get me wrong, I still sniff my baby’s head and watch his squirmy, squinty, squiddgey goodness and feel proud and in love. I still survey the absolute wreckage of this house and see these little lives unfolding before my eyes with a sense of bewildered, thrilled, exhilerated incredulity that these boys are mine and I am theirs.

It’s just that this has been quite a baptism of fire.
Having the fourth child in the small hours on the first day of school holidays.
Then everyone being sick, Oscar very much so.
Which impacted on the whole management plan. The big boys were meant to go to my Dad and stepmother’s for a few nights this week. Chef’s Mum and Dad were going to take them during the day a couple of times. Mum was going to take them on various outings. Instead everyone got sick – too sick to go away, Chef’s mum has been bed-ridden sick, Mum’s had what we’ve all had as well as the whole cardiologist development. the Chef has had three double shifts this week and the reality of managing four children on my own five nights of the week has been very, well, real. Oh, and its rained . A lot.

So Chef had the day off yesterday and I fell apart.
I think because I could.
If Jasper cried, I cried. It was as if my heart couldn’t absorb any more pulling on its strings.
I had that sensation of everything being too much. And relentless. That hideous feeling when I’m falling into my pit of wave after wave of domesticity and parenthood and money issues and mother issues and body image issues knocking me down and back. Over and over and over again.

And then, at around 8pm, I (finally) had the dawning realisation that it was just a bad day.
Which was weird, because there were good things in it.
Like we left the house. All of us. In the bus. It was the first time we were all in the bus together and it felt just fine.
We ate bbq chicken and hot chips at North Head, watching the ferries sail past and seeing where the small slivers of sunlight were hitting their mark, then wandered around the Mall aimlessly freezing our butts off. (Open air mall = stupid idea in winter, as in we might live on the beaches but it sure ain’t the Gold Coast)
And when I said to Chef last night that I felt like a warm pudding, like sticky toffee pudding, he up and made me one.
Just like that.

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  • sueeeus

    You deserve –or NEED– a meltdown now and then. How else can you release all that pent up tension of the magnitude of this amazing life you’re living? Those boys… …they are so beautiful. I hope you can catch your breath soon, and just forget about the house wreckage. Or embrace it. It’s the ambiance of good living! 🙂

  • Em

    I agree – I would imagine a good cry is an absolute necessity! my heart is with you… i can just begin to imagine how overwhelming it must be (and if it didn’t scare me so much i would have a fourth!)

    in complete admiration!

    Em xx

  • Susan

    You’re wonderful. You’ve articulated that frantic,treading water season of the smallest baby in the family. Gah, when can I break for a breath etc etc. And lots of tears. I struggled to cope with the last babies.
    Delurking now, after some time reading your blog. You write so well. I do believe there’s a book contained within this blog. So hang in there.

  • Kim

    I love a de-lurker. And thank you one and all for your words of support.

  • joanne

    You are a living legend … how fantastic that you knew it was just a bad day. Tomorrow will be better – even if it slightly – better.I am with Em – in complete admiration

  • blackbird

    I remember those days.
    But only because of this post.
    K was in New Zealand. I had a new baby and two to get off to school.
    I had a good cry to him on the phone at two in the morning.
    Sometimes your body needs you to cry and you just have to go with it, even if there were happy things in the day.

    I hope I didn’t help push you to the edge by teasing you about cooking.

    I’m hugging you and in awe.
    You are probably the strongest mom I know –

  • Badger

    Okay, dude? Can I remind you that you just had a baby, and your body is still getting used to the idea of having him on the outside? Your hormones are going FUCKING NUTS right now. That is NORMAL, it happens to everyone who gives birth, even people who don’t have the black dog of depression running after them. It’s a chemical thing that is SUPPOSED to happen and I’m not going to let you feel guilty about it, dammit.

    You are doing JUST FINE. Better than fine.

    That being said, I do hope everyone is 100% healthy very soon, watching the ferries sounds lovely, and I can’t believe how much that boy looks like his three brothers!

  • Jenn

    That last picture is my favorite. He looks THRILLED to have a new little brother in his life!

    I think it’s completely normal for ALL mother’s to feel absolutely overwhelmed from time to time and just cry cry cry. I only have two and I’ve done it.

    Ahhh…husbands…it’s amazing how they can seem so damned clueless at times, then other times, so freaking caring…I love that he made you a pudding!

  • Krista

    Letting you know I’m here, and I’m reading and being a dreadful commentor. I feel at a loss for words because you know I am so where you are at. You and a few others I read, with new babies (and several children) are so amazing at articulating what these times are like. I just can’t seem to find the time or the energy to let the words flow. Maybe soon… Until then, I am so grateful to be able to read your posts and go aahhhhhhhhh, someone else said it for me. Thank you, Kim. You are doing awesome, you’re completely amazing. Wow. And GG is so very, very sweet.

  • Kim

    Ok. First things first, thank you to all my cheersquad on the sidelines, your collective ‘go kim’ is ever so appreciated, although it makes me feel a bit uncomfortable as any compliment or vote of support/confidence does. Seriously guys, I’m just doing what we all do,it’s just all of you post on far more interesting things like holidays by the sea, craft projects and the like, leaving the detritus of your day to the privacy of your own homes. My dirty laundry is really all I’ve got so you guys get to bear witness to it time and time again.

    And yes B, I really am just the carrier.

    K – what I have in being able to use words you do so much more eloquently with pictures. I am deeply envious of those stunning b&w numbers of your newest recruit.

  • killyweasel

    hey champion

    i just got an email from a single girlfriend who has come back from a quick zip to Morocco, buying shoes and throw rugs. me – 5 days at port macquarie, 8+ hours in the car each way, 4/4 people with lung lurching coughs and flu, potential case of chicken pox discoverd in the bath 1 hour after getting home tonight. life is what happens isn’t it. you are doing well to get through your daily grind.

    and never fear – i read once ‘a tidy house is the sign of a wasted life’ i just haven’t had the strength to share that one with my mother in law yet. although, my wonderful mum, as a mother of four, certainly appreciates it!

    love ya

  • Jonathan

    It doesn’t matter what the question is, Sticky Toffee Pudding solves everything.b