Real Life Mama: Making memories amidst the chaos

Alright, any other parent out there as exhausted as I am? Even though we are almost a full month in, most definitely, I am not in back-to-school and all the activities shape yet. It’s not like they ease you back in either, it is everything all at once.

And from some rough, emotional mornings to being gone almost every evening during the week – all while maintaining work, the house, lunches, dinner, breakfast, cheer, dance, homework, baths and a bedtime schedule. Whew, is it summer yet?

Seriously, I already feel like there is not a second of the day that we aren’t doing something throughout the week. We run around like crazy, barely doing anything that involves us doing something fruitful together, and yet getting all the things done.

It seems like the only time we have to catch up are the moments right before bed — which always seem rushed because I still have dishes to do and laundry to fold and all the next day stuff to figure out, or while I am chauffeuring them around.

To be honest, thankfully, I have a neighborhood full of help getting my girls back and forth to events as most of our girls are all doing cheer together and some doing dance. Sharing the responsibility of driving the kiddos to their events is so appreciated — but does limit our car chats — which pretty much just leaves bedtime to really check in on my babes.

As mentioned before, many nights, bedtime is rushed — prayers, blasting off in their sleep rocket ships and off to dreamland. Sometimes, the girls, more so Reagan, get close to bedtime and want to see Daddy and I miss out on bedtime chats completely. And while those nights help keep my plate more manageable, just like getting help with driving the girls around, I still hate missing out on any precious time with my girls.

So yeah, add that on to the pile of weekday worries this time of year. It is all just so flat-out exhausting. And what makes it worse is that everyone tells you just how much you will miss it: the exhaustion, the running around like crazy, the emotional mornings, the homework time together — all of it.

Yes, I know just how true those “you will miss this” statements are. I mean, heck, those newborn years seemed so long and tiresome, and yet now seem like they flew by. Those terrible twos (which were actually also the terrible threes and awful fours), seemed to last forever in the moment, but came and went so fast when I look back.

So I know that this time that I am in, it will be the same; I will long for this craziness of the school year and extracurricular activities soon enough. I know this. I realize this!

And yet, when I am in the season of chaos, it is a challenge and constant reminder to remember that “you’re going to miss this.” Honestly, I don’t know how many times in the past couple of weeks I have had to step back, remind myself of this, and then proceed with a better attitude. Because, guys, it is hard sometimes! Life, the rush, the constant go go go. It wears a Mama out.

But I know it is worth it – just like middle-of-the-night feedings and catching those gummy smiles, temper tantrums in the middle of the store and then watching them start to learn and grow from them. Every single stage has had its own share of highs and lows – but in the end, every time a season ends, I long for it.

And I am sure that I will long for this one too. Not today! Ha. Today, I am too tired to long for this one. But I will continue to push forward and make the absolute best of the hectic schedule and busyness. I will find the quiet moments to check in and just be present in the midst of running from sun up to sun down. And I will attempt to enjoy every single second of the chaos.

But I will still be exhausted. Because, let’s be honest, I bet there isn’t a Mama around right now who isn’t still adjusting to the new schedule of school and sports and still maintaining all the things at work and at home. Yet we still carry on and try to make the absolute best of every single second of it.

Yes, this season will pass all too soon, but while I am in it, don’t mistake my tiredness for a lack of enjoyment. I love every single second of this life with my girls. But, man, I sure am tired.

Sarah (Pitson) Shrader was born and raised in Lima. She is a Lima Central Catholic and Tiffin University graduate. Sarah is a full-time working mama who enjoys writing about her somewhat crazy, always adventurous life as a mother. She lives in Bath Township with her daughters and writing inspirations, Maylie and Reagan.