I haven’t written much on this blog recently because, honestly, I haven’t been sure what to say. I don’t want to be a discouragement to anyone. I am fearful that someone out there is considering adoption and will read a post that shows the harder side of the adjustment period and will decide that it just too difficult. That’s why I’ve been quiet. I have felt the need to just burrow down into my little hole and keep everything to myself until things get easier, and then I’ll come back out into the sunshine and tell you some great stories about how well everyone is doing. But that’s not who I am. You see, I am a “real” person. I cannot stand being fake, even if that means that I come across as negative sometimes. So I will tell you the truth.
The transition to having two kids has been really, really hard. I am embarrassed to admit it. I know so many great mama’s (mostly through our adoption community) out there who have 4, 5, or even 6 or more kids. They love it, they seem to do a beautiful job managing their households, and their attitude is “the more the merrier.” I know that I should not be comparing myself with others. My job is to be the person that God created ME to be, to ask what his will is for MY life. But try as I may, I can’t stay away from the feeling that I am a real weenie – I can hardly manage life with two children and a small house when these other beautiful mothers have two or three times as many and a much larger house to keep up.
I’ve been getting by on a steady diet of sugar and caffeine, and I’ve gotten very little exercise since we have gotten back. I know that is definitely making me feel crummy physically and making everything else harder, but I just can’t seem to get back on track. Most nights I get six-ish hours of sleep, and I am gradually getting tireder and tireder.
Everything is such a struggle these days. Madeline (almost two-and-a-half now) has been particularly whiny and contrary lately. She is more defiant and disobedient that I am used to. Dealing with her and addressing everything that needs to be addressed takes so much constant energy.
Benjamin is very needy. He is a happy child when he is being held, but does not like to be put down at all. Even for a moment. This makes things like loading up the car to go somewhere, putting clothes in the dryer, or even just going to the bathroom extremely difficult. He is a passionate little guy, and he makes his displeasure known by screaming. This is very understandable behavior. He was abandoned by his birth mother, and he was then ripped away from his caretakers of six months at the transition home. Naturally, he is afraid of that happening again. He NEEDS me to stay close to him, to reassure him over and over that I am never going to leave him. That I may walk away, but I am always going to come back. (This is getting better gradually. This week I have noticed a big improvement – Praise God!)
Both of my children need me so much. I feel like I need to give 100% of my energy and emotion to each of them. Plus I want to have at least a little left over to give to Daniel when he gets home. Then there’s the housework, the cooking, the errands. Oh, and I guess I should leave a little bit of time and energy to take care of myself – you know get some exercise, get a little more sleep, have some quiet time.
The math just isn’t adding up. If I give 100% to each of my kids, it is already requiring 200% of my normal energy. And that leaves nothing for everything else on the list. So that’s where I am right now. And that’s why you haven’t heard much from me. :) I know that things will get easier. I am COUNTING on that. There are just a lot of wrinkles to be ironed out of this new season of life. A lot to figure out still in order to make life work for all of us.
Just say a prayer for me if you will – for strength, for patience, for energy. And that I will continue to cling to my Savior - the Only One who can give me the grace and the peace that I need to face each day and be all that I need to be for my family.
P.S. By the way, for the most part, these struggles are not adoption related. I'm just a tired mama of two very young children. Who I love very much. :)