Drowning in the Middle

I am tired. Do you ever feel that way? Do you ever just get, tired? I have had these ideas these thoughts about what I could write about, what I should write about.There have been things I have written about, at home, in a notebook, but then I have stopped, I haven’t shared. Life got in the way. It does that. Sometimes you get busy.You don’t have time to hit publish because before you do, something else happens. Some of it is super fun like a vacation where after months and months of not having your husband home that often you get to go to the beach and just chill. The kids were so good that they even received a $1 a piece from an elderly couple at a restaurant who delighted in watching the kids enjoy the food and each other. I promise this is not normal. Normally I think that people just stand up and cheer when we leave.

Then we got a puppy. An adventure. My husband and I had a puppy when we were engaged. Before kids. Now we have a puppy with 5 kids. This is insane. I have to feed everyone. Exercise everyone. Pay attention to everyone. Schedule my day around everyone. Try to save my furniture from being destroyed by everyone. Stop everyone from tackling everyone. By everyone I mean 5 kids and a puppy. It is tiring.

My dad got sick. It was unexpected. I am not close to my dad. I never was. How should I feel? What is expected of me? What should I do? He stayed when he could have left, is that enough? Does it matter now? Does this erase it all? He is my dad no matter what. My mom died when I was a teenager. He is the only parent I have left. I have headaches everyday now.

My kids are into sports. I totally support sports in their life. I love that they can get out their energy. They can learn to work with different types of people. They aren’t just staring at a screen. I don’t have to be the one coming up with ways to entertain them. Sports teach all sorts of lessons. I forgot I have to drive them everywhere. All of them. I have to drive here and there and everywhere. I forgot that even though they wanted to do the sport that doesn’t mean they are super excited to go to practices every single time. There are tears, whining, arguing, and fighting. It is exhausting.

Tonight, at midnight, I took my puppy outside to use the bathroom. He peed rather quickly, but I knew he needed to go number 2, so in the darkness and silence the pup and I paced the backyard. It took awhile, especially for being midnight, but in the end he did his deed and ran over to me. I leaned over and ruffled his ears, put my nose to his, and knew that this wild puppy would one day be my comfort when I am sick, sad, lonely, or just want someone to watch tv with me on the couch without saying anything. His crazy now will pay off in loyalty later.

Going on vacation with my family was great. It was really amazing to see the almost constant smile on the face of my oldest. Sure there were moments, but this kid who is not known for his smiles, was definitely in his happy place. I loved it.

I drove home to see my dad. I went alone because I wasn’t sure what I would see. I saw my sisters and brother worried, all of us with our own stories, and all of us represented in some way. I texted my childhood best friend. We don’t talk all the time. We ended up at different colleges and we live in different states, but I knew she would be there. She was. She drove a few hours to sit with me. We caught up. She brought snacks. The fact my childhood best friend is still willing to drop stuff to be there is an amazing blessing, and I don’t take it for granted.

4 of the kids had sports stuff today. Back to back. Getting them all out the door, finding all the equipment, and trying to do it on time was a mess. Afterwards though they didn’t stop talking about what they did, what they tried, and what they accomplished. My daughter was all tears at her first t-ball game. She didn’t even play. Today, after she hit the ball and ran the bases, she ran over to me with a huge smile and gave me the biggest hug.

I am so tired. I hope this headache goes away. I am living this middle part. This hard part. The part that is so full of life that there is no way it can always be smooth sailing. I can either live the middle and resent it, hate it, and wish it away, or I can accept that there will be days, weeks, and months where I am just barely holding on, but that doesn’t mean beautiful things can’t happen in the chaos. Walking on the beach during our family vacation I saw many shells, and some were perfect without blemish, others you could tell had been tossed about, they had weathered the storm, and those were the ones that caught my eye. Here they were in front of me so much more beautiful because they made it to the shore after being discarded.

I am weary, but that doesn’t mean I will let the weariness consume me. I am pulled in many directions and feel the need to be in so many different places at the same time, but I will not let it weigh me down. I will reach out my hand and ask for help and be so grateful when it comes in the form of family and friends. I will live this middle, I will weather these storms, and will find beauty in chaos. Life will not leave me unblemished, but oh, the stories.

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