Wednesday, October 27, 2021

Remember Today: The Good, The Bad, And All The Challenges

Picture from walking the dog as clouds moved in for our days of rain.

Someday I want to look back on this and remember exactly what we were going through. The good, the bad, and all the challenges that come with it. Life gets crazy and memories get fuzzy. That's how humans repeat the same mistakes, women have more than one child, and the craziness of the seasons of life fall from recollection. 

Thunder shakes the windows, rain pelts the windows. It's another soggy day. We've been in a drought, rainy days few and far between. I forgot what rainy days feel like. We had nonstop rain two days ago too. I took advantage of the rain on Sunday, curling up in my bed and taking a nap. Today I don't have that luxury. 

My coffee is strong though, so hopefully that will keep me going. Ever since we stayed in our Airbnb in Ogden, we've been on a Starbucks Pike Place roast (because that's what our hosts had). By we, I mean the two youngest minis. All through vacation they drank a cup of coffee with me each morning. They've dropped the habit since returning home. Pike Place isn't my favorite, so I quickly replaced it with French Vanilla last night. The aroma is soothing, the taste bringing me calm, warm thoughts. It tricks me into thinking I'll get it all done today. Who knows, maybe I will?

Coffee is a must these days, as I spend my days with little littles. It's been a long time since I had so many littles under two. It's a different ball game that's ruled by naps, eating every two hours, poop, and naps. I stopped counting my steps after realizing I walked miles and miles each day, between walking up and down the stairs to and from the basement homeschool room, where my three have holed themselves up, to the daycare room, nap areas, and everything in between. I'm all Daniel Tiger during the day and Friday the 13th at night with my older kids. I can't tell if this helps keep me young, but it definitely keeps in "in the know." I know what the cool shit is for babies, toddlers, preschoolers, kids, preteens, and teens. This might actually be the most I've ever kept tabs on the cool shitz. I've also been informed that saying 'shitz' is not cool.

I went for my Covid booster shot Monday night. I had Moderna for my first two shots. This time I had Pfizer because that's what my pharmacy had. I also got my flu shot at the exact same time, in the exact same arm. My arm was sore yesterday, but nothing a little Tylenol didn't help. The booster was no big deal. I was achy and tired yesterday, yet no more so than if I had gotten little to no sleep. I felt better rolling out of bed this morning, even if the rain wanted to keep me in.

We're being told that children ages 5 - 11 will be eligible for a Covid vaccine at the end of next week. I can't tell you the relief this brings me for my own children. However, I'm disappointed and have been since the end of August, when I realized this wouldn't help daycare in any way. I had thought the next vaccine for kids would include ages 2 and up. I hope I can actually get appropriate guidance about how to handle unvaccinated children and those who can't be vaccinated. Having to come up with my own rules and regulations has been my least favorite part of this pandemic. I have only received unhelpful, conflicting guidance from our city, state, and country. It has made me think about giving up my business altogether more than once. If it weren't for the amazing daycare families I have, I can guarantee I would have walked away. 

And people are wondering why there's a worker shortage at the moment. This. This is why. The lack of support, guidance, and safety. That's my take on it. Along with a workplace shortage, there are still shortages on random items. Cargo ships are piling up at ports. People are placing blame on the President, when in reality, it's a problem of the pandemic. The stupid, shitty pandemic causes more issues because, guess what? The pandemic is a world issue, not just our country or a you issue. It has affected everyone globally. If a factory shuts down across the world, that can affect us here because that delays production, then shipping. The fact that people can't understand this no longer infuriates me, but leaves me wondering, 'how the hell have some of these people made it so far in life???' I've been asking myself this daily for months now.

Now that we're on the brink of our youngest two being vaccinated as well, I feel like I can breathe. As though this will somehow magically "fix" things. I know it won't, but I feel as though we can take them to a movie theater, or out to eat, without worrying. That we can celebrate Christmas with our families and not worry about them getting sick, or passing it to one of our high risked family members. That leaves us with a decision I'm not yet ready to make: keep homeschooling or send them back to their classrooms??? It's not simply our decision either. We're taking the mini's opinions and feelings into consideration. So far, none of us know what to do. I know I'll feel it when I know the answer, but I need to feel it soon, so they can go back at semester. That makes it easier on everyone: them, teachers, the school, their education records, me. 

Despite not knowing when the minis will be back in their schools, I'm making plans for when they do. Whether it's in January or next fall, I'm taking days for myself. I'll wake up, get them ready for school, drop them where they need to be, and then come back home to enjoy a house to myself. Well, I guess the dog will be with me too, so I won't be completely alone, but close. Maybe I'll get my hair done, treat myself to lunches, scrub some random parts of our house that get overlooked. Yes, I'm looking forward to that.

We took that trip this year. It was truly one of those trips that you hear people preach about when they say "take the trip. Do __________. Live life." Yeah, I did it with three kids and a dog in tow. I felt like a badass. It's not easy, but solo travel is so important. Do it with three kids and no one else, you'll be a goddamn superhero. Go for it. Do it. Despite the challenges it presented, I'll never once regret it.

I thought that once we had a dog on the property, squirrels and rabbits would leave us alone, but I was wrong. Apparently they enjoy being chased through the yard multiple times a day. They also really enjoy our pumpkins. We made distrubing pumpkins anyway, courtesy of kids who have been watching horror films, but now we have a faceless pooping pumpkin. They keep setting off our Ring camera in the backyard. I've been greeted by an up close view of squirrel faces on more than one occasion.

As we head into another pandemic holiday season, I laugh at the phrase "two weeks, flatten the curve." Two weeks is turning into nearly two years. The 1918 pandemic lasted two years. I had hoped we could use the knowledge we've gained in the last 100 years to come out of the pandemic sooner, but a whole lotta people are proving their lack of it.

Spending three nights a week driving to and from dance studios is wearing on me. There's still 7 1/2 months left of their dance season, but I'm over this. On Tuesdays, I finish up with work and then have to leave by 5:00 to make it to the dance studio by 5:30. Mondays and Wednesdays aren't as bad, but I don't love the Mom Taxi Service life. I prefer the doing, rather than being the one to sit and watch the world go by. 

That said, I completely understand how parents "get boring." My children have all the plans all weekend long. They have an all day Halloween party on Saturday with neighbor friends. Another neighbor is hosting, but we have to be on call in case they or the kids need help. There's a sleepover Saturday night at two places and we need to be home in case a mini decides to come home to sleep in the middle of the night (it's happened before). The oldest is going to a laser tag event with other teens Friday night. Meanwhile, I'll be at home, sitting, waiting, being slightly envious of my oldest's social life. So there you have it. Big kids make parents boring.

Speaking of big kids, how did we go from the latest animated movie on Disney+ to my kids watching CSI, Big Sky, and Friends?? I'm marveling at how this change seemed to happen overnight. I know it didn't, but it's suddenly apparent to me how much our life has changed now that the kids are older. I don't hate it, it's just different and new to us.

So, that's life. Summed up and in a nutshell. All the thoughts I've been thinking lately in a few short paragraphs. All the good, all the bad, and all the challenges that are brought to us.