Saturday, February 28, 2015

Temptations Only Mothers Know: Evening Plans....That You Ultimately Cancel

I'm exhausted at the end of the day.  All the bottom-wiping, dish-washing, food-preparing, making tears into laughter, and generally staying sane.  It wears me out.  And there are so many times where I'm like, "Oh yeah, I'm definitely going to do this thing that starts at 7:30.  I can leave as soon as hubby gets home, have a little time to myself, enjoy the company of other adults for once...  This will be GREAT!"

But then reality comes.  It's 6:30 and hubby is walking in the door and I'm ready to turn off.  I'm ready to pretend I have no children instead of four and I'm ready for a little "time out" of my own, in my own space, where no one can pull the belt loops on my pants so that they start falling down, or make a mess of a room in five minutes flat, or call to me crying from the bathroom because they peed in their pants just two inches from the toilet (this seems to be happening daily in our house).

In theory, I love hanging out with friends.  I love meeting new people.  I also love blogging.  And crafting.  And a slew of other really cool things.

But the first thing I really want to do when I am no longer fully responsible for my children?  Be ALONE.  I want to finish a coherent thought.  Think through a whole sentence from start to end without being interrupted.

So let me just take this opportunity to apologize if I have ever made evening plans with you and cancelled them.  I am tempted by the allure of adult freedom and conversation.  I am tempted to imagine all the fun I will have by escaping my house for just a few hours.  I am so tempted by these things that I make the plans.

But then I don't follow through.  I am the lame one making an excuse at the last minute.  I am at home realizing if I make the effort to go out, I will be all the more cranky when I get home because I will be doubly exhausted.  People think I'm an extrovert.  And don't get me wrong, I do love being with people.  But when it's the end of the day and I've been managing small humans for most of the time, it feels like putting on a show to keep friendly conversation.

Oh, and did you notice how this blog is a day late?  Just another plan I made that got left behind.  Like a pile of clothes discarded for a time when they're clean again, I just put all my "fun" things-to-do on a list that never stops growing.  Some days the laundry gets cleaned.  Just like some days I actually follow through.  But most days, the piles and lists are much bigger than what's actually done.  It's just reality.

I often tell myself that it's just a season of life.  And that's probably true.  It's also true that as I age, I am being more and more careful with my time.  It's full of the important things.  And the important things aren't always the "fun" things I used to fill my time with.  It's okay.  It's okay if I don't hang out with a group of people or make new friends.  The things that fill my life right now are wonderful.  It's work, for sure.  But it's the best kind of work that fills you with satisfaction and joy and a deep sense of goodness.  I'm blessed to be given such a job.

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