Rob and I have both been on edge the last couple of weeks.
I had a meltdown of epic proportions last weekend
and he was spiraling today into an irritated funk.
As we drove thirty minutes north to my Sister-in-Law's house
to celebrate my Brother-in-Law's 40th birthday,
we had a chance to talk together and to reflect on our lives together.
Rob and I met early in my Sophomore year of college-
his Junior year.
From our first date (shortly after our meeting), we have never once looked back.
No temporary breakups, no "taking a break."
Twenty two years together, nearly 18 years married
and we agreed today.. we are at the most challenging place that we have ever been.
Three kids: one in high school, one in middle school, one in elementary school.
An intense career for him, with long hours and long commutes.
A hectic life for me, holding down the fort, getting kids various places and meeting the emotional and physical needs of everyone in the home.
We find ourselves frazzled and spent and often on edge.
When our children were very young,
we could not imagine being more tired, more sleep deprived, more physically drained.
"It will be so much easier when they're older" we used to reassure each other,
and in some ways it has been.
The kids at least have the *capability* of feeding themselves, doing basic self help skills etc.
That part of just keeping them alive and accounted for has eased.
But in its place is the very emotional work of raising a teen, a tween and an elementary ager who is more or less a tween.
It's early mornings that now combine with late nights.
It's nightly practices or games or projects or meetings.
It's endless bickering and trying to stay one step ahead of who needs what.
So much of it is good and so much of it is rewarding
but I've only recently begun to understand
what people meant when they would say "Enjoy them while they're young!"