There is always an event in our lives that makes us forget the fairytales we live and remind us of just how difficult reality is. That event for me is watching my cousins.
Don't get me wrong, these little precocious balls of ferocious energy I call little girls can be lots of fun sometimes. And nothing is better than the looks of excitement on their faces when they see me walk through the door or the yells of "Deeemmmmiiiiieeeerrraaaaaaaaaaaa!" and grabbing my waist for a hug before I can even put my bags down. I consider myself lucky...most people don't get to feel that feeling until they have kids of their own. I play games with them sometimes, and teach them new things.
But it has its downs, too. I'm tired. I didn't get much sleep last night, and I was up early and I had to get the girls up and fed and dressed. Nia, the older one, wanted to set up a lemonade stand so I had to chaperone that (despite sitting in the shade cold and sleepy). We came back to the house and I had to find something quick for lunch, and now I'm hoping they just stay quiet for another 45 minutes until I take them to karate and I'll be done for the day.
I want kids. And the topic of having children has come and gone a lot over the past months. But my experience with my cousins, who may as well be my sisters, has reminded me of the HUGE responsibility kids are. My privilege is that I can give these children back to my aunt at the end of the day (lol)...I mean that I'm not responsible for everything. But when you have children of your own, you can't give them to their mother or send them anywhere else for answers. You're responsible for all of it. You're responsible for their 3 meals a day, the roof over their heads, the clothes on their back, the transportation to and from school (or the bus stop), and the toys they play with. You are responsible for keeping them happy but teaching them the difference between right and wrong. Every time I am with them alone, their lives are in my hands because they are not old enough to do it themselves. Every time I take them to the park or to the pool or to the movies or anywhere else we may go alone, I am responsible completely for them. It's huge.
Writing this very article is sapping the little energy out of me that I had left. I'm drinking coffee in hopes that it will somehow give me a boost but it doesn't seem to be working very well. I now have half an hour before I need to get them ready for karate. Whoooooooooooooossssaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh. Today is Day 1 of the next 8 weeks of my life. Jesus Christ see me through this (oooo this is spawning the idea of an entry on religion...when I finish doing all the things I'm SUPPOSED to be doing right now I'll get to that)! Wish me luck, everybody.