We're back! We had such a great time on our mini vacation in San Antonio! We:
Took goofy pictures
Ate a ridiculously amazing steak dinner topped off with a perfect creme brulee(also not pictured- I felt a little awkward busting out the camera in such a fancy restaurant)
Visited the Guenther House, which had an incredible gingerbread replica of itself inside
I'm thankful for:
The fact that my gut is healed enough to handle things like corn and sugar occasionally, and that I didn't have to obsess over my food except to make sure that it was gluten free
The afternoon at the mall that I got all to myself, dressing up
and finding the Alamo.
We had a great time, and we were so happy to get back home to see the kids.
But WOW. I was NOT expecting reintigration to be so hard. Apparently just three days apart was long enough for the kids to forget all the boundaries that we've been setting for forever, and for me to forget just how HARD this parenting thing is! We were back to snatching toys away from each other, forgetting to use words to talk to each other, and forgetting to ask mommy for help when the words aren't working. (They don't normally do these things perfectly, of course, but we've made some good progress and they're learning well.) There has been lots of boundary testing since we got back. I'm sure that's normal, but it sure isn't fun! Lots of patience required.
Even though I knew that the first day back was a little harder than my average day at home with the kids, I found myself thinking, "No wonder I'm so tired all the time! No wonder I always feel like I can't get anything done! No wonder!" Parenting these two is a non-stop job, from the time they wake up until the time they go to sleep. NON- STOP. Even when I am able to step away and get something done, I always have to be ready to drop everything to help a child, and that by itself is exhausting, at least for me. I don't know how I let myself forget that, and how I let myself feel guilty for not doing more, but I'm stopping with the guilt.
Parenting is a really difficult job. I think I need to give myself a little more credit. Even on days where I don't get anything else done besides care for the kids, I've done something awesome and I don't need to feel any guilt over that. On days when I'm able to get other things done as well(which is most days), I need to celebrate that, not feel guilty that I wasn't able to do more. I'll be able to do more when the kids are older, but for this season that requires non-stop attention, I think I'm doing pretty darn good, and I'm going to start giving myself credit for it.
Less guilt. More being proud of myself. More encouraging myself. I think that's the big lesson this vacation taught me.
Do you ever find yourself feeling guilty for not doing more? Do you have a hard time remembering that simply parenting small children day to day is a big accomplishment on its own? What helps you keep these things in perspective?