Saturday, April 28, 2012

I Think This is What's Called "Hanging in There"

I have been having a hard time cleaning my house.  It's not that I don't want to; I stand there and stare at the ground coffee I've spilled in an impossible number of places between the grinder and my French press, and I can't seem to will myself to clean it up.  Same goes for the crumbs in the stovetop and the dishes on the counter.  The effort it took to clean my crock pot today was herculean.  I am just so tired, worn out from the effort of getting through reams of adoption paperwork and three grant applications, each one more detailed and invasive than the one before it.  For Elvie, I do all of it, and I do not mind, but once it's done, I just don't have the mental wherewithal to figure out how to do more household chores than are absolutely necessary.  Not to mention the fact that making sure I'm not crying all the time, or at least in public situations that might be somewhat embarrassing, takes serious effort, too.

So my little family gets fed dinner every night, and the laundry gets done on Fridays, and the trash in all its forms makes its way to the bins outdoors.  The cat box gets cleaned without fail.  But beyond that, I just don't have much left to give.  Beyond that, I am just trying to be okay with being on this side of the world while my tiny baby is on the other side.  I know these two-ish months are a gift to us, giving us time to get everything in place for her before she gets home, but it still doesn't mean that I don't feel a deep ache for her, that I don't wonder if she is being picked up and loved on even though her birth defect might make it awkward for some people.  Of all the things I want for her, most of all I want her to be treasured by someone.  I want someone to be looking out for her and holding her and looking in her eyes with sympathy when she is scared and lonely.  That is what I ask for in my prayers when I am working hard not to cry in public.  I just want someone to show her how lovely she is.  Until I can get there, I just want someone to be on her side.

I'll admit that one of my coping mechanisms is to just keep things bright and chipper on the surface.  Please don't expect me to talk openly about how I am feeling about Elvie; I can't hold it together if I even start to go down that road, so I would rather talk practicalities.  I don't necessarily think there's anything wrong with that.

I also don't think there's anything wrong with self-medicating with chocolate for a short time.  At Whole Foods tonight, I stood in front of the bakery case for a long time, trying to decide just how hard I was willing to break out with adult acne in order to enjoy a treat all by myself.  The bakery worker walked around the corner, saw the cheesecake I had in my hands, and asked if she could help me.  I explained that I was just having trouble deciding, and she said, "Oh, well, it's all really good, but that one you're holding has brownie and cheesecake layers."  Right then and there, I decided that I would break out incredibly hard if it meant having the pleasure of using the tiny spork included in the container to deliver that level of deliciousness into my mouth.  I might have twelve new zits by morning, but I don't care.  I would do it all over again in a second.

i will never tire of this
I would also put the hats that came for Elvie on my cat again in a second, but unfortunately, she isn't a very willing model.  This photo has nothing to do with anything.

Have a good weekend, internet friends.


  1. Hang in there. I know what it's like to have NO energy for housework when you're feeling overwhelmed in other areas of your life. I also know the overwhelming feeling of going from one kid to two... I had a rough transition when we brought home our second child, even though his adoption was so much smoother than our daughter's had been. It gets better. The coffee grounds and dust bunnies can wait. :)


  2. How can you possibly clean your house when your cat clearly needs to be wearing a hat at all times?

    It's easy to flounder when the 'fire drill' ends. What can you possibly do when the paper chase winds down? It's a weird feeling and I remember it well. You'll be busier beyond your wildest dreams soon enough. Enjoy your downtime with Z. I'm so excited to see little E! I'm glad to hear things are moving forward quickly.

  3. In the "hanging in there" stage, too. Same symptoms.

  4. I've recently become a reader via Girl's Gone Child and I am in total awe of your little family. The way in which you parent with such intention, such though, such fierce love is an inspiration to me. Your love and thought and intention come pouring out of my screen when I read your words. So many could learn from you.

    I know that I have.

    Sending love to your family. I hope someone is holding your faraway baby right now.

  5. Mary, Love your blog. I know your Mom. I'll be praying for the sweet McBride family. Praying little Elvie is loved and cared for until you can bring her home. Praying everything goes smoothly.



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