Sunday, December 21, 2014

Kneeling in the Sand

Praise God...I am no longer standing on tippy toes in the deep waves...I am now kneeling in the sand. Over the last few months (and I apologize that it has been so long since I wrote last), I have been gradually finding my way toward the shore. My feet have left the unstable surface of the shifting sand and the water has stopped threatening to pull me under. I am weary...on my knees...trying to catch my breath.

I truly have not even had a spare moment to sit in front of the computer to update this blog for three months! I can't believe that much time has already passed by. Each day just flies by with the normal routine consuming every waking minute.

Our typical day starts with hitting the snooze button at least two times...followed by showers, getting a family of seven ready, breakfast and a departure for work/school/daycare all within a one hour time frame. I load four of the five kiddos into my beautiful new "Mama machine" (Honda Odyssey) and head to daycare to drop off the twins and then on to Eugene Field to drop off Haley and Aiden. Aftyn is able to catch the bus to and from school on her own since she is in Middle School. Then it is the mad dash to NW Iowa to put on my Occupational Therapist hat while Craig heads off to work at Midcontinent Communications. At the end of my day, I hurry back to Sioux Falls to attempt to fit in a quick workout before heading back to Eugene Field to pick up Aiden and Haley. I help them with their homework and start to prep dinner as Aftyn arrives home from school. I make sure all is well with her world and then head off to pick up the twins. We are usually in the middle of making dinner when Craig makes it home from work. We eat dinner, finish homework, do baths, brush teeth, say prayers and tuck in five munchkins. Then Craig and I dash around the house putting all of the pieces back together again just in time to fall into bed exhausted....only to get up the next day and do it all over again.

The beautiful thing is that in the midst of all of this craziness, we are able to find time to dance like no one's watching, sing at the top of our lungs, snuggle like it is our last chance, hug closely and smooch sweetly. We try to soak up the moments with the bigs and the littles. When the twins are sleeping, we snuggle with the bigs on the couch watching movies together, play board games and on one occasion arranged for the twins to play at their aunt and uncle's so we could take the bigs to see the traveling Cirque du Soleil show, Varekai!

When the twins are awake and we get a chance, we try to take in all of the firsts with them that we can. Over the last five months...they have experienced so much of life! So many firsts! They began their lives experiencing life in a small room with two nannies, fourteen other children and very few opportunities to leave that small space. Since arriving here, they have flown on an airplane, been on a boat, swam in a lake, took a warm bath, kayaked, ate a frozen treat, drank cold beverages, rode a bike, learned how to play with a variety of toys, went to the zoo, played at a sprinkler park, watched fireworks, saw hot air balloons, went for a road trip, ate at a restaurant, jumped on a trampoline, touched their first snow, trick-or-treated, rode in a car, sledded in the snow, learned to like dogs, went to a wedding reception and partied at a dance party with the SD Lieutenant Governor, rode a four-wheeler, went hiking, made a snowman, tried dozens of new foods, soaked up every moment of outdoor fun that they could and even opened their first Christmas present...EVER!!! It has been an adventure.

When I blogged the last time, Aiden and I were still having some trouble connecting with the twins. I am happy to share that Aiden and I seem to have bonded with the twins much better over the last few months. Aiden has learned to play a bit more gently with them and has figured out ways to connect with them better when playing with toys. He has even read to them on occasion without , my prompting!  I am so thankful for this step in the right direction.

I think that the twins have gradually learned that I am their mama. This has helped them to connect with me over the last few months. They don't fight over their dad quite as much and sometimes even will choose me. (Although they usually still choose him.) I have to admit that this transition has probably been the most difficult for the twins and then for me. I have done a lot of thinking about why that is and have come up with a couple of reasons. The biggest reason is that I am an introvert. I recharge when I have alone time...and I have successfully created a family that places me in the midst of a crowd at almost all times. I was noticing that I was beginning to struggle with anxiety more and more. After talking to Craig, we decided that I should discuss this with                                                                                       my doctor.

It was very difficult to punch in the number to call my doctor and then even more difficult to admit to the receptionist, the nurse and then the doctor that this beautiful family that I fought to bring together is now forcing me to anxiousness and even possibly the need for medication. Sigh. My mind slipped back to that Beth Moore event where I learned that "I am woman enough"...and my heart broke because I was filled with a dreadful feeling that I was failing. After many tears and some sweet heart to heart conversations, I realized that I was not giving myself the grace that I would give a friend in the same circumstance. I am a super busy Mama trying to juggle five kiddos, a professional career, a husband, a dog, after school activities and several volunteer opportunities. I am pouring myself out for this family every day. I was able to receive two prescriptions to trial to see if they would help the anxiety. I am still just getting started with them and haven't even used one of the meds yet, but feel blessed to know that I have the support system I need to figure out how to manage these emotions.

Please continue to pray for us as we journey onward as a family of seven. I am truly kneeling in the sand. On my knees in prayer for comfort, patience and guidance. Resting my head in the sand because I have never been more tired in my life but filled with joy and anticipation at the same time. So happy to be out of the deep waters and shifting sands.

Kneeling in the Sand...Praising the Lord,