When our twins were infants, it would annoy me when other MOMs told me that it would get better. It was tough, certainly, but it wasn’t “awful” during that period so I didn’t really understand why they kept telling me it would get better. Then the twins passed 2 1/2 years and OH MY GOSH, did it ever get better. My husband and I felt like we came up for air for the first time in, oh, 2 1/2 years. We didn’t even know we were under water before we took those big gulps of air consisting of an easier bedtime, small steps in self-sufficiency, and the ability for the twins to play with each other and older kids in our neighborhood for longer periods of time. Truly, we look back at the period as the dawn of a new era that we continue to enjoy.
That said, what we did to take advantage of our new found freedom is sort of crazy. We doubled the size of our vegetable garden, decided to raise chickens for eggs (if you are on the fence about chickens, we totally endorse this), adopted two kittens, and we both began to craft and enjoy our hobbies. I also began to start running again for about an hour a day, which is singularly the thing I do that spoils me most. I love exercising and had missed it for many years.
I should mention that I am employed full time and at mid-career, which means increasing job and mentoring responsibilities.
How do I do it?
I do not clean. And I mean that seriously. I know some of you all say that and perhaps you mean it’s time to change the towels in your bath or you haven’t put away all the clean dishes. What I mean is that our house is a freaking mess. And while it bothers me, it obviously doesn’t bother me enough to choose cleaning over running/gardening/knitting/chickening/kittening. There is no way we can afford any help to clean up the house until the twins get out of daycare and we pay off the associated credit card debt in 4 more years or so.
So our solution? We have parties!! Yes, it is like killing two birds (but not chickens!) with one stone. We get to socialize and it forces us to clean the house a few times a year.
I really feel like MOMs get special dispensation in some area of their lives. For us, we choose to forgive ourselves for living in a messy house. It makes it so much easier to survive and thrive with our little bunnies. Our children. We call our children bunnies. We would not actually get bunnies. They would destroy the garden.