Wednesday, July 20, 2011

A Problem I Have

Shortly after having my third child I realized that things were HARD, really HARD and I couldn't put my finger on just what it was. Sure now I had three kids to take care of. An infant is hard enough by itself, but I was having an extremely difficult time. Nursing seemed to go well, Ashlee got it! But the time involved was becoming VERY HARD and then I was told her mouth was too small and she wasn't getting enough at feedings. This would mean I'd have to nurse and then pump and feed her, MORE TIME for feedings. I started pumping as it it seemed like I was falling farther into a pit that had no way out. When I started pumping I felt ok about it because Ashlee was getting what she needed. Soon it became nearly impossible to pump any more, the pain was excruciating and made every two hours a living nightmare for me. (Pumping was 100x's more painful than actual nursing!) After many prayers, pleading to my Heavenly Father to help me feel better, many discussions with my husband and family and very close friends I made the sad decision to stop pumping. After that I quickly climbed out of that pit but I was still having a hard time adjusting to my new life. I was exhausted ALL the time. I could get some good solid sleep and still feel as if I was only asleep for minutes. This of course made it harder for me to function and it seemed like feedings brought out feelings of longing that I couldn't quite explain. I longed to still be nursing my child, even though memories of why I had stopped were fresh in my mind. I never felt like the longing was all part of a bigger problem I was being faced with. Soon I started having these feelings more often, like I was wasting time when I would sit down and read a book, take a little rest when I felt exhausted or watch a little TV. It even got so bad as feeling a longing to do more when I was running and only listening to my music. I felt like I should at least be listening to a book or conference so that I could be accomplishing more.... Lately I have come to realize that I have a problem with multi-tasking. Not that I don't do it, but that I do it TOO MUCH!! How can this be, you might ask! How can one possible do TOO much? And here is what I have to say about that. My whole life is a multi-tasking event. I am a FULL time MOTHER, FULL time WIFE, FULL time EMPLOYEE at the Bank and I am now the second counselor in the YW at church. I have a husband going to school FULL time and I am a FULL time FRIEND, SISTER, DAUGHTER and more!! Now don't get me wrong I realize that we all have a very FULL plate, but having my third child really brought this out for me. Do I feel overwhelmed? Of course I do, most days I end with a feeling of inadequacy when I look around my house and see all the things I didn't get to, then I get to work the next day only to face a desk full of papers and work that never ends. Then I look at my family and see work that should/could be done that just isn't. Ethan isn't getting his alphabet every night like he should, his writing is regressing instead of getting better, I just now started colors and shapes with Katelee... she knows all her colors but shapes are another story and about a million other things that I should be doing with my kids. Then there is my husband, this guy is amazing. He gets up early to go for a run, goes to school full time, helps out with the kids and then rides his bike at night. We haven't been on a "date" in quite a while and he hasn't complained about it. (I take that back, we have been to the temple twice in the last month, those are kinda our dates!) I could be doing so much more to support him and help make his life simpler, but I'm not. And so I feel a bit overwhelmed to say the least. Anyways back to my problem. Because of these feelings of inadequacy and being overwhelmed I have developed an internal feeling of need to get as much accomplished in one day, hour and minute that I can. This means that while I might be doing something like folding the clothes, my mind is swirling with ideas of other things I need to do or could be doing while I'm doing this. When I'm in the bathroom I feel like I have to be doing other things to make going to the restroom worth my time. And the worst part of this problem is that when I'm feeding Ashlee or singing the kids their night time songs I still feel like I'm wasting some time. Before I realized I had this problem I would sing a little faster and finish quicker than normal so I could go and do some of the other things that I so desperately felt I needed to get done. How horrible it sounds when I type that... Please do not get me wrong, I LOVE my kids, I LOVE being a mother, wife and everything else. My priorities weren't horribly wrong, as I still did things with my kids, I still spent time with them and I would have done anything for them, it was just the weight of the world, and everything that comes with it that was making me crazy. So one day I was thinking about running on the treadmill and I was trying to think of a way I could crochet my car seat blankets while I did that... I ran this idea over in my mind a few times and then as if a light bulb turned on I realized that I had a problem. Who on earth would try to crochet while running, who has an issue with waiting in a Dr.'s office for 5 minutes without having anything to read, who rocks their little baby at night and thinks of the other things she has to do? I realized in that instant that I had become chained down by my desire to multi-task. It sounds silly, I know, but it's crazy to feel like I do when I look around and see all the things I feel I need to get done. Once I realized I was trying to do too much I took a step back and reevaluated the things I "felt" were pressing and needed to get completed and prioritized differently. Family first, no need to have anything else in life if there is no Family.... This means singing them just one more song, 10 times at night, Holding little Ashlee a little longer at night when we get to quietly rock and gaze into each others eyes, Hold my husband hand while we drive and show him how much I love him and appreciate him, Smile and think how much I'm going to miss the yelling, screaming, fighting, laughing, joke telling and little spills one day when my kids are all grown and gone and most importantly this means making my kids feel and know that their mother loves them more than ANYTHING else I have to do at that moment! Life goes too fast to worry constantly about cleaning the toilet, doing laundry and anything else there is to do that day. So I didn't get all the laundry done because Ashlee took longer to eat than normal, I love the sweet spirit in my arms more than laundry anyways! I still catch myself trying to think of ways I can do two, three or even four things at once, I am doing much better about making the important ones a priority. When faced with going for a run or rocking my daughter a little longer, I'm going to pick my daughter!!! How thankful I am that I had a realization of what I was doing wrong and how to work around it!! What do we have, if we don't have family?

Family is not a distraction to my life, but rather the reason for it!


Maynor Moments said...

You are awesome Hilary, you are always willing to help anyone. You are a great example to your kids.

I do understand completely. My days fly by and every night I look around the house that I did not clean enough, the scriptures I have not read enough,the running shoes that wore not worn today, the husband that I can't even remember our last date (sometime before Dallin), and the sleeping babies that I did not hold enough. Sometimes I wish there was just a few more Korina's running around my house.

Get Hooked said...

Wow lady, I do not know how you do everything you DO! And then to think about doing something while you run. It is incredible to me to read your about your life and witness all you are doing. Give yourself some credit. Your kids are happy, your husband is on his way to being successful. You are a successful working MOM! So your house isn't clean. Neither is mine and I was home all day. I've come to accept I will always fall short. I love you and think you are amazing. Really, I couldn't imagine doing half of what you do. Keep up the great work. Don't give up and just rememeber your priorities and everything else will be fine (or wait until it meets priority status) Hugs!

Heidi said...

Oh are an amazing person and you better nor forget it! It is good that you are taking the time to ponder your situation and remedy what you feel needs to be. Multi tasking is good, but yes there are extremes where you need to step back and realize you are not required to do every.single.thing. that is good in just 1 day! You have a lifetime and we live and learn as we go on. There is always going to be something GOOD that we COULD be doing but we always need to take into account our priorities and remember this from Dallin H Oaks..."We have to forego some good things in order to choose others that are better or best because they develop faith in the Lord Jesus Christ and strengthen our families."
You're doing good girl...keep up the good work!