Life’s a Beach

There’s this ebb and flow to parenting, hell, to life, really. Maybe I just notice it more now that I’m responsible for other human beings.

My life makes me think of the ocean. It’s ebb and flow. Some days I’m splashing around in low tide, surfing the waves, soaking up sunshine and joy. Some days I’m laying in the warm sand, sipping my iced coffee, reading a good book and letting the sound of the waves lull me into a sated sense of calm. Other days, I’m caught in the rip tide and I’m struggling to just keep my head above the water while I swim for shore. And then there are the days I feel like I’m drowning.

Right now, my kids are asleep. My house is quiet and I’m headed for that calm beach. It’s a much needed break, because the last 4 weeks have worn me out. I was drowning in the reality of my own life.

We adopted a rescue dog, Peanut, who has fit perfectly into our family. He is very much like a therapy dog for both me and my daughter. He’s 7 months old, so I’ve pretty much got a toddler on my hands. He’s super cute; I love him to pieces. And he’s a lot of extra work.

The day after we brought Peanut home, my 6 year old came home from school with lice. *silent scream of despair* I’ll be honest… I lost my shit. My daughter and I both have long hair. My daughter also has sensory issues and hates to even wash her hair, let alone comb through it strand by strand with a super fine tooth comb. She screams when you brush her hair gently, for crying out loud. The lice situation was a nightmare come true. It took over a week to get rid of the lice. And it took about 8 inches off of the length of Caylie’s hair. We both had allergic reactions to the medicated lice shampoo (which didn’t even kill the damn lice) and our scalps were burning and flaky dry for weeks.

I washed everything in my house at least twice. Then, after 5 days of combing out bugs and laundering bedding, jackets and all my hopes and dreams… My washing machine died. Oh yes. It was dead. The repair guy told me it would be cheaper to buy a new one than to fix it. So I went the rest of the week without a washing machine. When I was single, this would have been perfectly doable. I never had my own washing machine until after I got married. But after owning one for the last nine years and having to wash the clothing and bedding of 4 people…well, it got a little crazy.

With all the hubbaloo about the lice, the washing machine, etc., Peanut started having potty training issues. So I’m wearing my last pair of clean underwear while I wait for the new washer to be delivered, am combing through the hair of a screaming child, and my dog is shitting all over the carpet. Parent Teacher conferences are happening, regular doctor’s appointments, grocery shopping, horseback riding lessons, meal planning, cooking, dishes… *gasp for air* my dog needs to go out to pee at 4 in the morning, the kids are fighting *doggie paddle, breathe, doggie paddle* a nighttime trip to the ER for a child’s mysterious rash, the tooth fairy forgot to come to the house, kids getting up in the night, a painful loose tooth, 6 phone calls in one day from the school nurse about emotional meltdowns and toothaches, *gasp, gasp* a trip to urgent care to make sure the tooth doesn’t have an abscess, and we need to adjust medications because someone had a growth spurt.

Whoooooosh. I rode the wave to dry land. Finally. I think I’ll sunbathe here for a bit. Because it’s snowing outside, I’m hosting Thanksgiving tomorrow, and my son was vomiting from both ends this morning.

Happy Thanksgiving! May your day be low tide and joyful.