You guys. Today was hard. It was one of those days were despite lots of positive things happening (65 degrees, not a cloud in the sky, slept till 8 am, etc), nothing seemed to go right. I was in kind of an odd mood from the moment I got up, mostly because I didn't know what I was going to do during the day. We didn't have a single plan. The house was clean, laundry was done, and I wanted to get outside and do something fun, preferably with a friend or two. But I didn't want to drive to Anchorage, so we ran to Target in Wasilla to get some outdoor toys/supplies (including the lounge chair Riggs is crying on in that picture up there) then came home and spent the rest of the day outside (except for Riggs' nap).
Usually being outside makes us all happy - mama, Riggs and the dog. But as you can see, that didn't work today for some reason. There were so. many. tears. I still don't really know why. And when we finally got over the post nap whining/crying fest (that lasted for nearly and hour) and were really happily walking down our gravel road to get some exercise, Riggs fell and skinned his little knee, and the crying started again. "Mama, Riggy get hurt. Riggy get huuuurrrrrrtttttttttt..."
I was happy to console and give cuddles this time, since he was actually hurt and recovered pretty quickly (once he stopped crying, he actually seemed proud of the fact that he had an owie that was bleeding, ha - "Riggys tough, mama"). We managed to get another hundred feet down the road before the next problem presented itself. The neighborhood 'problem' dog* came running, barking and snarling, down its driveway toward us, stopping to stand it's ground and see if we'd keep coming towards him.
After finally getting all the tears wiped up and owies kissed and on our way, our sunny afternoon walk was once again cut very short by this problem dog. I just felt like giving up on the day at that point. Of course Riggs doesn't understand the situation, so I had to carry him (flailing and crying, again) back to the house, where he kept repeating "Riggy go on a walk" over and over until I couldn't stand it any more and we just went inside. Luckily we made it through dinner and bath time happily (thank the Good Lord I had just bought a few new bath toys at Target so he was actually happy to give up his walk for bath time) and then he was in bed and I could relax and recover from what still feels like a very stressful and long long l o n g day. After tidying up a bit I got in bed around 8:30 to spend some quality time with my laptop while chatting with Sarah, and just as I'm feeling settled in and cozy, one of the fire alarms starts chirping.
really? today? this is happening now? these were my thoughts as I spend the next ten minutes figuring out which fire alarm it was and trying batteries (two of three didn't stop the chirping) before finally getting back in bed for good.
Looking back it doesn't sound that bad, nothing was really that horrible. But man did it feel hard. I felt stretched to my limit all day, and every time things just started to feel calm/normal, some new drama presented itself. And I felt alone. Like I was the only person in the world who was struggling while everyone else was probably just having the best day of their life, eating ice cream and smiling while watching their happy kids play so nicely together in a perfectly landscaped lawn. I mean really? Where do thoughts like that even come from? I find it especially ironic that I was feeling that way after just reading (and loving) my friend Andrea's beautifully written post about motherhood being hard.
And so I'm writing this partially to have a good vent and partially as a reminder for other moms who might tend to feel like I did today, alone and like they're the only one struggling, that you're actually not alone. We all have hard moments and hard days, it's one of the most unglamorous parts of being a mother. But luckily the moments pass and the days eventually come to an end. And I can look back at my pictures from the day and remember that, in addition to the hard moments (like the never ending crying documented above), there were, in fact, happy, magical moments too that were much too easily forgotten in the midst of an extra challenging day.
ps no I am not squatting half naked in the street
I have shorts on that you just can't see in the picture