It's been a rough week and weekend around here. Donovan's been sick. Zach and I are sick. We're all mostly over it, but in that annoying window where you're not sick but still not exactly well, either. Zach paid the deposit for attending Tuck, and so we're both excited about and a bit overwhelmed by the prospect of school and moving cross country in 6 months. I'm making a long list of things we need to do, sorting and getting rid of and researching, and wondering when I'll get a chance to do any of it.
I'm frustrated at how overwhelming life in general still is. I figured the first year would just be a wash-- I knew I wouldn't have time for anything other than just taking care of the bare necessities for the kids (and, hopefully, myself). But I'd hoped that by the time the first year had passed we'd have restored some semblance of normalcy. Many things have improved dramatically, but so much is still so difficult. Namely, the utter and complete lack of free time. Q is still so unpredictable in his naps (both in taking them and in their length); I spend most of the nanny's time here running errands or getting some one-on-one time with D; night sleep is still broken and random so even when I do get breaks I don't have the mental energy to use that time efficiently. I realize this is the end of a bad week and that colors everything, but it's just frustrating how incredibly difficult it all still feels. And, as Zach pointed out the other day, we don't even have it that bad. In the grand scheme of things we have very little to complain about.
I do see a light at the end of the tunnel when I look at D, though. Q is adorable and wonderful and I adore him to pieces but OH MY LORD he's just so much work and effort, and it just drains me. I then look at D and how much more independent he is. Sure, he still has his challenges and he can throw a mean tantrum, but overall he is so pleasant, so fun to be around, so entertaining to hold a conversation with. He can put on his own shoes and sometimes even get his own food and stuff (oh, and he can generally be counted on to sleep from ~8pm-5:30am every night which is also pretty darn nice). Or like when we flew with the boys over the holidays, D took almost no effort on the plane. It was just pleasant with him. I know D and Q are different people and Q may be totally different when he's 3 (almost 4!) years old, but still. I see how D is at this age and it's like a preview of things to come. I enjoy D so much right now, he's just such an amazingly cool and fun kid. And I enjoy the heck out of Q, too, but it's so much more mixed up with frustration and stress and exhaustion because he takes so much.
It will be nice when we're past the stage of needing constant supervision, past this fog of exhaustion and chronic sleep deprivation. I think I'll enjoy parenting a bit more then.
(and if you're a parent of older kids reading this and laughing, please try not to burst my bubble)