“How are you doing?” With a newborn and three other kids at the house, it’s a question I get asked more and more, and it’s one I’m finding more and more difficult to answer.
I take that back. I can answer the question easy enough, but the real answer is more complex than what I usually give, which is “good.” While my life is good overall–I’m healthy, my kids are healthy, I have a great family and good group of friends, great job, etc., there are times when…
Good doesn’t capture how overwhelmed I feel when I’m on my fourth hour of a crying baby, frantically downloading “how to solve baby crying” books and white noise apps and trying to figure out what’s going wrong on my swaddling technique, all while wishing I had a commercial sized-margarita machine at the house.
Good doesn’t relay the sense of failure I feel when I get a call that my child is bawling because he doesn’t have a costume for dress up day like all the other kids (the same dress up day I told myself not to forget just that very morning).
Good doesn’t share the frustration that comes after spending hours cleaning the house, only to have the family completely destroy it within 10 minutes of them arriving home in the afternoon.
Good doesn’t give off a hint that I didn’t shower and dress until the afternoon because I was too tired to do anything but veg out in front of the television or any other number of things.
Frankly, telling everyone the truth about how I’m doing would probably be exhausting for me (and probably them). However, I’ve learned that while it’s ok to give most people the good answer, we also need a few people in our life who get the real deal answer.
So while my life is good overall, sharing the real deal when we have problems and issues keeps us from feeling alone. Parenting isn’t easy, and we need to know and be able to say that it’s ok not to have it all together, all the time.
For more on how to deal when life gets rough, check out my follow-up post, God Can.