Having five at home all day every day this summer started to wear on me. I didn't have the energy for the week day trips that I thought we'd do since we were busy running every weekend, and busy with summer piano and band. That left me feeling stuck. Because who willingly goes to the store with five kids in tow?
It also left me feeling slightly guilty once they were out the door and in someone else's care for the majority of the day. I doubt I was really present as often as I should have been.
Ah, the multitude of emotions of mothers!
Now that I have more quiet during the day, I hope it means I'll continue to have more patience for the older kids in the evenings, more energy to carve out time to give them one-on-one attention.
For me, the question of whether I'm giving my kids enough is always lingering.
I'll listen to the advice I myself have given, and know that because I'm asking it'll mean I'll try, and that's all you can do as a mother - try to do your best.
With Donovan's best play mate gone to school, I'm getting a chance to connect with him more.
And I'm loving it. He's such a sweet, bright, and funny kid.
He just turned four, has been riding his bike without training wheels for a few months now, builds forts out of blankets and chairs daily, still tells me when he has to go potty, and loves to help me clean.
And he's currently saying "Mom, I want to play hockey with you".
So I'm off to make another attempt to be present, to connect with my child while I have the chance.
And then it'll be one down, four to go.