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Make It Work

We survived the weekend! Woot!

Making family time is important. How do you balance your children, relationship, and work life? 

How does anyone balance it all? No one's perfect. No one can do it just right. Different things work for different people. If I'm to be totally honest, my kids are first then work and then my relationship.

We are blessed in that I can stay home with Celia during the day and when Kirk gets home from work, I can go to work. I try to have dinner ready and the kids at least eating by the time he comes home. I'm not the best at keeping house. I'm always rushing to do laundry when Donovan runs out of underwear or Sophia runs out of socks. It's hard to make the time to spend with my husband but we do. How does it all break down in our house? Like so:

Having an ASD child is so time consuming with the therapy, medication management appointments and making sure he's doing well in school. When he's home, it's a crapshoot on which kid I get. Do I get my sweet, loving snuggler or do I get the child I can't please no matter what I do? I wish my Magic 8 Ball was more accurate in these things.

Sophia's in therapy too and may soon be in a group therapy setting for kids with siblings on the spectrum. She  is the middle child and I feel she gets lost in the shuffle sometimes. She acts out when she's not getting the attention. I know it's normal for her age and birth order. It's still exhausting ya know?

Celia? Oh that devious, charming 2yo of mine. Being that age means a nap is required for Mama. She has her pre-pre-school class, her physical therapy and just being 2. Throw her hearing issues in there and well. Kids. Top priority.

Work comes second mainly for the money it brings. It's not a lot but it pays for the groceries every week. The  irony of working at a grocery store and spending my paycheck at said grocery store is not lost on me one bit. My job is also my escape from my kids. We all feel this way about our kids sometimes. You know it, I know it. I need my time for me and yes, being at work is just what I need. I have my regular customers that I love and hold dear to my heart. I truly enjoy a large portion of the people that I work with. If I have more than two days off in a row, I feel like I'm wasting time. I need to be doing something.

And now, my husband and I. We do the best that we can. We would love nothing more than to go out with the kids to the zoo, the aquarium, the movies, etc.  We choose not to. We don't make excuses about it. We lay it out there: Is the potential joy from this outing going to significantly outweigh the meltdowns, eloping, inappropriate behavior? Most times the answer is no. I won't lie - I don't like going out in public with my son most times. The first five, maybe ten, minutes of an excursion are fine. When you get farther along, things fall apart. No amount of preparation helps. We can tell him, down to the minute, what we will be doing and it will *not* happen that way.

Yes, we take the easy way out. We stay home with the kids. Sometimes Kirk will take Donovan to a movie that they both want to see. A lot of times, I take the girls with me when I run errands. Sometimes I take just Sophia. All three? Rarely.

All of that being said, the husband and I do make a point to spend time together. We have our Sunday evenings together. Sure, we watch a couple tv shows but we're there. Next to each other. We text a lot during the day and have a lot of lunch dates. We know when we need more than that time together and we do what it takes to make that time.

Long story short, I don't know how to balance kids, work and the marriage. We do what needs to be done. We respect each other. We talk to each other. We challenge each other.

We *make* it work.


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