Families come in all shapes and sizes with all types of dynamics and blends. My family is a blended family. I have two children from my previous marriage. Mack will be thirteen in February, and Madie is ten. They are both in middle school. Luella is the "baby", she will be three in February. She was born one week after Mack turned ten. For the last two years I have bragged about how awesome the big age difference is. Mack and Madie could get their own breakfast and make their own lunches, change a diaper and hold Luella while I cooked dinner. It was totally different than the era when they were little, Mack was not quit two and a half when Madie was born, and I barely remember much of her being a baby, other than she was happy and fat. Yes, I was 10 years older, but it seemed so much easier. I had four extra hands after all. It has been so peaceful.... until now.
What happened you ask? I guess I blocked the memories of what two and half looked like out of my mind? It is like hanging out with someone totally insane. She is so happy one minute and then laying on the floor screeching and shouting something no one can understand the next, all because I put the pink socks on her and not the blue ones. She all but refuses to use the potty, because she wants to be the "baby" she has even asked if she could go back in my tummy, and somedays I wish that she could. Yes, there are fun parts. Watching her become her own person and learn new things is breath taking, and that makes it all worth it....most of the time.
On the other hand I have a young man who grows two inches every night. I have taught him how to pluck his eye brows and squeeze his black heads. I have had a really painful conversation about the reason behind his forty five minute showers. I will spare you the details of that. It was brutal. His voice is changing and he looks older to me everyday. It seems like just yesterday he was Luella's age and my heart breaks at the rate he has grown before my very eyes.
I often feel like I am never truly meeting each of their needs. Between Mack and Luella I live in two different worlds. One of tantrums and potty accidents and the other of puberty and long showers. I often feel like I'm failing them all. Like there isn't enough of me to go around, not enough hours in the day, or patience in my heart. However, when that feeling comes I usually am blessed to stumble upon a moment of them together and I realize that I can still brag about the greatness of their age difference. Just last night Mack read to Luella and tucked her in, so I could council a client on her latch over the phone. It works. I am enough and we will survive #pubertyandpottytraining
Oh, and don't worry I haven't forgotten about Madie the middle child, but that topic is it's own post. Sigh.
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