* The above picture is what I feel like doing most days... except I can't because everyone else here is already doing that... I mean, I guess I could join in the chorus!
* I'm here but I feel like I'm drowning most days...
* Daddy has been out of town quite a bit so this single-mom thing is for the birds.
* Faith Clare is ROCKIN' the potty training thing... except for today when she peed on me.
* Scout has a gigantic bald spot on the back of his head from moving his head in his sleep.  It looks hilarious!
* I have a dry-erase tile in my kitchen that says "Kenzie is patient. Kenzie is kind. She is not easily angered..." from 1 Corinthians 13- I keep repeating it to myself throughout the day! Not working as well as I had hoped.
* I LOVE hearing my kids laughing and playing nicely together.
* I DESPISE the screaming and fighting that has been frequenting our home lately.
* My new best friend is the excersaucer which will keep Scout occupied for up to 30 minutes at a time!
* I have cried quite a bit lately.  Frustration, anger and seeing an ugly side of myself makes that happen pretty fast.
* I stole a "training" tactic from the Duggars today.  That is how far I have fallen people... taking tips from people who are crazy enough to have 19 kids. Made D repeat 10 times "FC, please don't take my legos from me." Got desired effect. No more fighting and resulted in them both laughing at me.
* We celebrated Maddox's 3rd birthday last week.  It was surreal and felt uncomfortably normal.
* All 3 kids slept in one room last night and I couldn't get over how precious it was... Knowing Maddox will be with us again one day makes my heart glad.
* Did I say that I feel like I'm drowning most days?
* I feel like I'm trying so hard and failing constantly.
* Potty training and nursing don't mix very well.
* Deacon is the sweetest boy and wanted to buy flowers today for his Mimi and Ita for when they come tomorrow.
* I secretly love it when the kids BEG for me to put them to bed... No matter how insane I've been throughout the day, they still forgive me and love me!
* Dusty has grown a beard that I CAN'T STAND! I'm trying to be nice about it but that's about to be over when I take the clippers to his face in the middle of the night!
* I am desperately looking forward to a 4-day break this weekend! Time to be a wife and a woman around other adults.  Needing this recharge in a BIG WAY! SO thankful to our moms :)
* God is bigger than all of this momentary stuff and I am definitely not calling on Him, relying on HIM like I should.
* I love my family with a passion comparable to little else in existence.
* Life is full of contradictions... God is the only truth.

"Fight the good fight of the faith. Take hold of the eternal life to which you were called when you made your good confession in the presence of many witnesses."- 1 Timothy 6:12


Kathleen said…
Some day, you're gonna miss this.
Lyndsay said…
I feel exactly like this right now. I'm a mama to 3 little ones too. Drowning is a good word picture of life with 3 kids 4 & under. When I get frustrated and feel like I'm at my wits end I remember a post that MckMama wrote about how she's gonna miss this. Even when I do have bad days and fail they do forgive and they do love me because I'm their mama...and I'm sure I will absolutely miss day!
The Smiths said…
AMEN sister. I cry DAILY. the bickering and arguing around here is killing me, but I do love that mine fight for me to put them to bed. Lets get all of our chaos together soon.
Devin said…

Let me tell you something that may not make you feel better, but truly, it should.

EVERY single mother on earth has felt like this. More than once. On more than one occasion, and on many, many different days.

And the ones that say they never have are LYING.

Motherhood is hard. I have been right where you are. I had all three boys within 3 years. When I brought Ethan home at 2 days old, Cameron was 15 months and Colin had just turned three. To boot, Shane was working full time PLUS flipping a house. He would leave at 6 in the morning, and would come home after 9 at night. We had just moved (to a fixer upper, aka a PIT...ugh) 3 months prior, and I used to joke that the neighbors thought I was a single mother, because we had been here for 3 months and they had yet to see Shane!

I cried every day because I was so overwhelmed. I was nursing and potty training, AND trying to clean/unpack/adjust to a new house too. I can relate to every single thing you are saying. I GET THIS.

Then, you get so frustrated that you do and say things you don't mean to. Chalk it up to lack of sleep, lack of proper nutrition ('cause who has time to eat properly when you are dealing with everything going on!?), lack of adult interaction/ can be all or any combination of these things, plus many others!

I know this is hard. It was hard for me too. The bright side is that it does get better. I know it feels like it's a vicious circle that never goes anywhere, but each day, look for ONE small improvement, and write in on your dry erase board, to remind yourself that it is slowly getting better. (By the way, I don't think it's a bad thing to take something from the Duggars--have you SEEN how well behaved those kids are! LOL) Maybe the kids only fought 82 times today, instead of the 85 they did yesterday. That, my dear is improvement. :)

Look for gains in the small things. NO matter what it takes, and what doesn't get done, make sure to get alone with God each day and let him encourage you and love on you for a bit. This is a MUST.

I am always, always praying for you my friend...but I will step things up a bit, and pray a bit more specifically for you. Let me know if there is ANY other things I can do for you.

Oh, and one more thing. HANG IN THERE. :)
Anonymous said…
Thank you! That is how I feel. I cry so much for how easily frustrated I get with my kids. I totally lost it with my son yesterday when he wouldn't put his bathing suit on for swimming lessons! It was one of many horrible mommy times lately! So much regret for not being able to handle moments like those with more patience and grace. They deserve better but it seems that no matter how hard I try, I just get overwhelmed/frazzled so easily. I love your idea of putting your name saying you are patient, kind, etc!! I saw the Duggars too and thought I'd try having them say things 10 times-great idea! The fighting is what is hardest for me sometimes too, or is it the whining? As you said, they are my life, I love them more than my own breath...I just want to be a better mom. I want them to see Jesus in me not an angry, joyless mom. Please keep sharing any ideas, insights you have.
Debbie said…
Kenzie, I have the highest respect for you and I truly think this post just boosted it up some. It is so honest and down to earth to me. I am quite a bit older than you are, could very well be your mother and I still feel that way. We have two girls still at home...10 and 13. We have taken in 3 of our grandkids, 3, 4 and 8 months. With my 10 yo's health and my age...its really getting to me.
We can both do all things through Christ who strengthens us!!!

BTW, I loved the part where you are going to take clippers to Dusty's
Jaclyn said…
I love this post! there are so many mommies who are feeling these things right along with you!
I loved the line "i love my family with a passion comparable to little else in existence"
This past year has been a lot like this for me as well. With the addition of Cate in April it seems all sense of our old life was gone. I handled two with grace and just a bit of crazy mixed in. There were two parents, two kiddos. Now Greg is in his last semester and isn't even home a whole day a week and OH MY GOSH. Some days I just want to shake him and remind him I did NOT sign on to be a single mom...
But then I realize it will soon be bedtime and I CAN make it through the day...even when they wake up twenty times a night and INSIST I rock them the WHOLE night I can do it. You can too. Cry, it's okay. I hide in another room sometimes and just sob when I can't take it anymore. I'm poddy training Fionn too right now, and let me tell you it's been almost a year. I'm not rushing it. Cate's nine months now, and we're sort of getting into a routine...just in time for her to be mobile.
Keep Breathing, and sharing. We know how you feel!!
Have a great weekend
karina said…
Kenzie. Take a deep breath. I think we all go through this as moms, especially after a new baby joins the family. The whole famiy dynamic changes and there are a million things to adjust for/to. All very overwhelming. Give yourself some time to adjust. Give yourself a break. And give yourself a nap. Seriously.
Thank you so much for sharing your heart. I needed to hear that. I've been feeling overwhelmed and as you've said "drowning" for a while, so to know I'm not a horrible mom for feeling that way is comforting...because I think you're a great mom. Oh...and I agree...potty training and nursing don't mix. At all!

Thanks...and I hope things smooth out and life is kind again soon.

Sabrina said…
Thanks Kenz!! I totally relate on a few things but the beard part made me laugh out loud!! I HATE when Tom grows one too! I needed this...Life is full of contradictions...God is the only truth!!
Laurie in Ca. said…
Oh Kenzie, hold on sweet friend. Even though my babies will turn 40 this May, I remember these drowning days so well. From generation to generation this is one thing that doesn't change. Motherhood is tough but so rewarding at the same time. I only have one piece of advice as you navigate your way through this: Throw away the guilt as far from you as you can. This is a normal part of life and goes by so fast. I love you and am praying for you my sweet friend. Just remember to breathe:)

Love and Hugs, Laurie
Andrea said…
Hi Kenzie-
Just wanted to let you know you are not alone. God sees you and knows your heart and knows you are doing the best you can. Isn't it amazing to think that He gave us these precious children even when He knew that at some point, we'd mess up even though are hearts are begging to do the job perfectly?

It's beautiful to see that even in your trials, you are finding sweet moments and ways to discipline yourself and your children. I think that's partly why God gives us the children He does - because He loves too much to leave us the way we are, and, after four children, I'm discovering so much about myself that ain't pretty, stuff that I know He wants me to get rid of.

The part-time single-parent thing is tough but I know God is doing a great work in you though this. I was totally there for almost a year just last year. It completely sucked but I know it helped me look at some things that needed examining.

I'll be praying for you as you work through this time and praying the God continues to bring moments of respite so you can recharge.

About the beard... totally felt the same way when my husband started growing one over Christmas. He kept asking how it looked and I was always carefully saying, "it looks okay" while trying not to tell him I wasn't so down with how it felt. Though this has improved with the length of the facial whiskers. (I/m beginning to think there's some sort of beard vibe guys must be picking up on since three other men in our church have decided to sport the beard since Christmas!)

Love and prayers,
bambi said…
Please know I could NEVER get any kind of a pleasure or satisfaction in your, (or the many other moms here) pain and frustration. That being said, to hear a women I respect and admire so much suffer from those same days I did, helps me feel a little less guilty for my 'failings'. We judge ourselves so harshly, and they love us so unconditionally. Until they get older.... I still get so much joy when I hear my children laughing, and cringe when they argue. And they are all over a century old, making me REALLY old. : ) And I still cry daily, just now for different reasons. I'm really missing the days I 'missed', being so 'uptight' and would love to hear that laughter, and even arguments right now. Because when they make up and start playing and laughing again it is like the angels singing.

Hang in there Kenzie. The other moms have 'said it all' much better than I could. Thank you for your honesty, as it makes me feel more 'worthy'.
JMB said…

I've SOOO been there. All I can say is, thank GOD for bedtimes. And, while you can't exactly, literally hand one child off to God and say, "here, YOU take care of one", know that He is still there with you at every moment, even the bad ones.

Brittney said…
This is exactly how I feel RIGHT NOW! I have three little ones at home too- an almost 4 year old, a 2 and a half year old and a 3 month old - and I feel completely overwhelmed most days. I am so grateful to have a husband who works incredibly hard to provide for us so I can stay home - but sometimes I just feel so alone! I raise my voice more than I want, send the children to their rooms more than I want and sometimes feel like I'm just counting down the days until they're old enough to know better - like it's ever going to happen! But I don't want to wish away their toddlerhood! I want to love it!

I love your dry erase tile, and I also read this today in the 7 Habits of Highly Effective Families:
"Between stimulus and response there lies a space.
In that space lies our freedom and power to choose our response.
In our response lies our growth and happiness."

Maybe if we take that space and pause, choose a response that is appropriate and doesn't make is mad women, we will be happier with ourselves? I think I'm going to take advantage of that space now:).
Kathy said…
Hope this gives you some perspective, Kenzie. My two kids are grown and married but your little story brought back memories. One in particular which has always bothered me.

When little the kids were fighting over a cereal bowl both wanting the same one. We had two special ceramic bowls from their aunt. I tried to reason to no avail and in frustration actually threw it down on the floor breaking it! So embarrassing to think of it now and always bothered me that I behaved like that.

Our son (daddy to a our three year old grandson) and his wife live in the same city as our daughter and her husband. Recently we were all together, I mentioned that awful day, wanting to apologize to my kids for the bad behavior. Neither of them had ANY memory of it at all. None!!! And all these years I have cringed at the memory and it's not anywhere in their memory at all!!!

We moms' are so hard on ourselves and our kids are forgiving.

Enjoy your precious little ones. They love and enjoy you and thankfully don't expect perfection or remember when we are not.

Glad you were able to have some adult time. Adults need that.

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