Sometimes you have to keep your goals simple

Now what are we s'posed to do with him?

Mom left.  The in laws left.  Hubby returned to work.
Just me – Mommy.
Just lil ole me. . .
and FOUR kids.
All by myself.
All day.
*insert panic here*
Monday’s goal was survival…  and we did.
Tuesday I got brave and took everyone out to have lunch with Daddy.  Then I went – WITH THE KIDS- to Target to buy my new stroller.  Bad idea with no big strong Daddy there to help pick up the heavy-as-all-get-out stroller into the cart, and up to the register, and into the trunk.  Followed by a trip back home so I could assemble it out of the public eye.   My sanity still being MIA, I took them to the library so I could look for once a month cooking books.   Tuesday must be “Glutton for Punishment” Day because I decided I wanted to actually COOK something and left the library headed for the grocery store.  I’ll skip ahead to the part where after resisting the urge to punch the nice cart fellow who offered to help me get my stroller back into the trunk (hormones anyone?), I proceeded to sit in my car and cry along with my children.  Taderbug was crying because I didn’t bring her a drink.  Doodlebug was crying because I refused to buy her a candy bar.  Bubbagirl was mad the I wouldn’t let her drive and Peanut was hungry.  I wondered what the heck I had been thinking.
We were two weeks into being a family of six and I was worn out.  I felt like a horrible wife, a mean angry mom and a useless member of my extended family.  I kept trying to tell myself that once the holiday weekend was over we could get back to normal.  My dad would come up Friday, my in laws would come visit on the 4th for my FIL and hubby’s birthdays, and then everyone would leave again and leave me to get my family back in order.   I just had to hold it together until then.
Wednesday and Thursday were awful because hubby had to work overnight AND during the day.  My backup help was either at work or trying to sleep, and very much needing me to keep the kids quiet.
I can remember, with our first child, my doctor telling me that the key to not feeling overwhelmed was to start small and keep it simple.  I was instructed to keep my ‘to do’ list to 3 things, and not to add anything unless the entire list was crossed off AND I felt up to tackling something else.
To Do:
1. Feed the little people
2. Don’t eat the little people
3. Survive the day
Some times that the best you can do.

6 thoughts on “Sometimes you have to keep your goals simple

  1. Peggy Brister says:

    I’m sorry things have been hard for you. I won’t ever know what you’re going through because I only have 3 kids. The hardest for me was having my last 2 kids 13 months apart. I had 2 in diapers, like you do, 2 in car seats, 2 in a stroller, 2 in high chairs. It was like having twins and it was HARD. I didn’t know how I was going to make it through the day some days. But the longer I did it, the easier it got. It never got EASY, just easier. Until one day I looked up and they are both wiping their own butts, feeding themselves, bathing themselves, and before I know it they will be grown and moving out. (hopefully) 🙂 Hang in there. I know it’s easier said than done. Just take it one day at a time and don’t look too far ahead and overwhelm yourself. I think maybe you tried to do too much too soon with so many kids and not enough help.

    • TaderDoodles says:

      Thanks Peggy! I remember someone telling me that it gets easier once they are all past the age of 5. I must say my planned outing on Tuesday didn’t seem that difficult when I planned it. Hubby was supposed to be at Target with me but we got to lunch late and he had to go back to work. I also forgot that two of my youngun’s have to be in the cart.. didn’t leave much room for the stroller LOL. I’m glad I’m not the only one who thinks this is hard. Maybe I’m not as crazy as I thought, or as slackin’.

  2. Suzanne says:

    Aw! Poor Mama! I follow you on twitter and I have to confess, I’ve not ever read your blog. I will now – all the time! I’ve been there! Repeatedly. And I make marvelous decisions too. I was giggling at some of this because I see so much of me in it. You’re doing great. Hang in there!

    • TaderDoodles says:

      Thanks Suzanne! I’m not one for taking things slow! I’m so sick of being cooped up in this house and having to ask others to run my errands that I just HAD to go by myself. I’m definitely going to take a different approach to this week!

  3. Melissa says:

    I have to say I am loving your blog! I have very little sanity and my children do not value what i do have left of it. I always have to run my errands with my 3 kids (DD 8, DS 4, and DS 2 3/4) and always have that’s everything from driving hubby back and forth to work (no license) to the older 2 back and forth to school, groceries, and any and everything else. I even take them to the zoo by myself. The tricks I have found to make it easier are these: DRINKS always always have a bottle of water for each kid I got them all the flippy straw kind, each in a different color I put ice water in them before we leave and throw them in my bag, snack: granola bars, animal crackers and anything else with under 6g of sugar per serving. and apples. If YOU value your sanity juice, candy, even fruit snacks and especially things like kool aid are a BAD idea because that sugar rush is sure to kick in before you are done in the store! the apples are the “on the way home snack” yes my car gets messy but my kids aren’t screaming and causing my eye to twitch either! Keep in store trips to 20 minutes or less and if possible have entertainment available as well, my kids get to have a book and one smaller toy each. those stay in the car and get rotated out when I clean the inside of my car 2x a week (not detail cleaning just getting the trash out and wiping out the crumbs).
    I pack my bag for full day excursions the night before when they are sleeping and have anything that needs to be kept cold ready in the fridge until I pop it in my travel cooler that is my summertime car friend lol. I also keep a spare outfit & hoodie for each kid in my trunk as well a a couple sposie diapers JIC even a picnic blanket because if need be we take a lunch break at the nearest park in between errands, then run off pent up energy and I get to relax for a bit!
    if you have a full day of errands, like appointments, several stores to stop at, bank trip, etc its best to make sure they get a lil down time in there and each stop is as short as possible. If there is a shopping plaza you can hit up more than 1 store in that is even better because they can walk between the stores! and if there is any sort of a courtyard or a place to relax for a minute, child let them dance around and have a snack and when they are getting antsy again move on to the next thing.
    Granted you have more kids than me but i used to baby sit 5 kids when I was prego with my #3 ages 13, 8, 6, 5, and 9mo in addition to my at the time 5yo and 1yo.. thank goodness for minivans… and i never missed a beat they went with me where ever i needed to go and if we had a good week we’d go to the lake and swim or play in the sand on the beach or a park, something fun for them and cheap for me as a reward.
    Oh and as to the oldest wanting to drive… a mom I know makes her teen “earn” drive time by doing chores, helping with the younger ones especially when they are out and about, with incentive they are more willing to help you out and as long as you are comfortable with letting them drive with the lil ones in the car have at it

  4. TaderDoodles says:

    Thanks Melissa 🙂 I’m glad you are enjoying my random babblings!
    I can not imagine running around the way you do with that many little ones! I have a friend who has 5 kids and babysits and she does stuff like that with them all the time!
    Hopefully my bad day was mostly because I was trying to do too much too soon.
    Great tips though on having a less stressful day! Thanks for sharing them with me!
    Lisa B.

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