You know, it couldn't have been more perfect.
Of all the days that I double check with KC to make sure he's got a set of keys before I lock the door and pull it shut behind me on our way out.......
Tonight I didn't.
For the first time in several weeks, I was going to try to get myself and the two kidlets to church on a Wednesday night. Some people probably think I'm some kind'a backslidden sinner for this, but after all the church drama with the kids, I decided I would get more encouragement if I stayed at home, kept the kids on their schedule and routine, and just work on some bible/studying after they were in bed. We tried to take them both to church, but it was just totally defeating the purpose b/c after about 7:30, both of them start getting cranky and if they're not in the middle of the bedtime routine about then, it is one un-happy family we got on our hands. Making them sit quietly in church or trying to get them to fall asleep in the middle of all that excitement is just generally useless and we end up spending all of our time at church sitting in time out in the nursery. Now I have two options: let them do as they please during service just to keep them pacified or alter the schedule so that their bedtime routine is not interrupted. Okay, so I'm just gonna tell ya, think what you want, but letting them do as they please or pacifying their every whim is not an option b/c we pay for it many times over in the days following. So. Since sitting in the nursery was getting us nowhere, I decided we'd try the other option. It's worked great. I've had Wednesday evenings to work on the church newsletter a little at a time, (and since I do a lot of proofing before I send it out for the final proof, I get to really think about and study a lot of articles) do some devotional reading, etc, and the kids are kept on schedule, bath, bedtime routines, and all that without any extraordinary amount of fussing,. and if I'm REALLY doing good, I might even get a load of laundry thrown in there as a bonus while I'm studying. The last few weeks I've been sick or had to work for my job though, so I haven't had the bonus of laundry.
I probably should password protect this post since I'm sure I'll get criticized for feeling that way, but oh well.
Anywho, although I decided upon that course of action through much prayer (maybe I should have added fasting, since the scales have recently started provoking me....but I digress) and felt that God was giving me the okay for that, it was not my intentions to make it a permanent arrangement. As such, I've been very carefully working toward extending their bedtimes little by little and at the same time keeping their routine very steady, so that they would hopefully be able to stay out later without having behavior issues. It's been going well.
Granted, church is not the only reason for this.....I have several other reasons....like getting them to start sleeping a little later in the mornings.....and...well, you know--stuff like that. And come on....seriously, have you any idea how difficult it is to go shopping after work for the pagan holidays (I'm laughing here, okay?) or anything else and go to the big town half an hour away and still get home and get the kids in bed before the "witching hour" (which at our house is around 7-7:30)??? And you can laugh, but it's really frustrating. I work 40+ hours a week, KC works at least 55+ hours a week and by the time we get home and get their routine finished for the night, we're exhausted ourselves. Forget doing anything like going grocery shopping. Or heaven forbid straightening up the house. I've gotten to where I have to take a day off work while the kids are at school if I need to get anything done. Saturdays are as full as any other day and you've got the kids to watch then on top of it all. Anyways, it's been somewhat of a priority for me to work on getting the kids schedules to more closely match ours.
But all that aside, last night we took them to the foster family/social services christmas party at the local skating rink and were out later than we've been, as a family, since I started keeping them at home on Wednesday nights. We were home sometime around 8:15 and the K-man was in bed and asleep by 8:30. Munchkin....well, she didn't do so well, but still it wasn't as terrible as some nights.
So tonight, I thought, hey....last night was bearable, I think we'll try again to take all four of us out to church tonight and if it comes down to it, we'll just leave a little early so I can still get them in bed before 9.
I wonder sometimes if their being foster kids has anything to do with their desperate need for a steady and predictable routine. I don't see many normal parents having these kinds of difficulties with their kids' routines. I tend to think it might, simply for the fact that they've had all the "knowns" (however terrible they may have been) ripped away from them and now any "unknowns" in their schedules just freaks them out.
For example, the other day I picked up Munchkin from school and K-man had been picked up earlier by his social worker for play therapy and she was just going to drop him off at home when it was over since it would be after school. Munchkin and I got halfway down the walkway when she stopped dead in her tracks and wailed, "Where my bruderrrrrr???? Mommy, my bruder, we have to go get him. HE GONE!!! WHERE K-MAN!!!!!" And when I told her that his SW had picked him up for play therapy and would drop him off at the house when it was over and not to worry, he'll be back later, she very sadly said, "maybe not." She moped all the way home and didn't cheer up until he got home. And I think those attachment issues may have some part of why she doesn't let us out of her sight. Daddy gone to the garage? She has to go look out and make sure he's still there. Let her stay up a little later to finish whatever she's doing? She will have at least two tantrums to thank you for it before you can get her in bed. Try to rush up a routine, she'll kick and scream and take twice as long. K-man is the same way, only less stubborn and vocal about it. You can rush up his routine and he won't like it, but the worst he'll do is fight sleep and cry and be grumpy.
ANYWHO!!!!!!! Sheesh. Where was I going with this? Oh yeah. So tonight? We've got the kids buckled in, we're climbing in ourselves and KC says, you got the keys, honey. I was like, whoa, wait just a minute. YOU DON'T HAVE THE KEYS????? Oh dear heavens. He looked at me (with a rather panicked look) and said, "Stop being dumb, honey, and give me the keys."
"I'm not being DUMB! I DON'T HAVE THE KEYS. See? All I have is my work keys. I thought you had the keys since you were already out and ready to go!"
"I thought you GOT the keys!"
"I thought YOU got the keys."
"You really don't have any keys."
"Oh, great. Just great."
So, my wonderful and very capable hunny proceeded to attempt to break in through the side door in the garage (thankfully we hadn't shut the garage yet) and after all attempts to pick the lock failed, dug out his drill and drilled a hole through the doorknob, while HIS wonderful and very capable (although decidedly forgetful) hunny proceeded to attempt to entertain and keep two active kids out of the way of the break-in attempts for the next hour and a half. About the time I finally got the brilliant idea to cut some windows in the cadillac stroller box and let them play in that for awhile, KC drilled through. Then he replaced the doorknob with a spare we had sitting around (maybe from the last time he had to break in that same door for the same reason) and putty-ed the holes back up AND hid a spare key. In a secure place of which I will not reveal. Duh.
Needless to say, we didn't quite make it to church.
So, tell me, God, are you trying to tell me something? B/c if it was just the devil throwing up a roadblock, wouldn't there have been a way around it? Frankly, I don't much see how there would have been any way around this one since KC worked as fast as he could to get back in the house to get the keys which would give us the capability to drive the vehicle. *sigh*
Anyways, the kids were off the charts tonight, so it would have probably been another nursery night anyways, but if I couldn't go to church, I sure would druther have done other things besides safely entertain kids in a decidedly un-kidfriendly garage while breaking into our own house. For an hour and a half.
This has turned into quite the long post. If you made it this far and if you have a decidedly negative opinion of me now, based on my statements in this post, please tell it to God and love me anyways. Remember, ya have to ta go to heaven....*grin*.
Love ya anyways.
Thanks for your help the last few days. As much as I laugh and kid, I'm being totally serious when I say thanks. Thanks for the ability to joke and have a good time. Thanks for helping me to feel the lightness even when I feel weighed down. Is that what you're talking about when you said your yoke is easy and your burden is light? But thanks for that. I know I'll never understand it all, and more than all that, I'll never understand why you love me. Crazy, nutty, moody, forgetful, and mistake-makin me. But all I can say is thanks. Thanks for the kids. Thanks for my hubby and my family. Thanks for loving me and for being there when no one else is, and just for helping me through another day.