Sunday, April 6, 2014

marathon season

Don't take this post as a dedicated complaint. It's really actually more of a temper tantrum.
 
Good, now we're all on the same positive page.

The interview situation is ... rough. I know Simon is doing well in his interviews because he is Simon and he is not Grace as she would request to answer all of the questions via the written word. We're both really grateful he has been offered interviews at all but oh my lonely ... he's been gone a lot. He's been to four + a conference in a little under a month and still has five more to go before this next month is over.

Cue rickety old piano horror music.

It's not that the two days chunks he's away are that terrible (they are not fun but! c'est la temporary vie) but when they bleed right into a call weekend? Look for my frantically flailing white flag that covers the entire surface area of Missouruh because I'm fried. Deep fried and ready for some quality time sans children ... just nine minutes of independence would do.

And it's not like Simon has it easy.

oh, wait.
golfing in Austin with his brother after interview #4 and nary an ankle biting Patton in sight.

I jest, I jest. If I had to hit up multiple interviews in one single sangle day ... there had better be my version of sunshine and golf (sunshine and chocolate ice cream with extra peanut butter) waiting on the other side of the pressure cooker.

But really, the other night, thanks to the tornado(s?) here and in Texas his flights were so delayed that he didn't crawl into bed until 2am and then was up and out the door for a 24 hour shift at 6:30 the next morning. So maybe I should count the blades of greener grass on my side of the fence.

Which should be easy considering I've generally got a gorgeous view of this little dollface ...

All because I gave him the blanket/milk/toy/snacks he shrieked for.
Those third borns and their sweet temperaments.
Damn it feels good to finally have an easygoing child.

But! We're good! Really.

The weather (which has an ironclad grip over my mood) is starting to perk up and hate a little less on all of humankind which means lots of sunny speedwalks around the hood ...


 ... Sebastian requested sunglasses like Julia and I couldn't find my spare pair so I gave him these. He slipped them on, looked directly into the sun and said, "ahhh, that's better."

Indeed.

I (sort) of apologize for this semi-downer of a post. I hate to use the word, 'season' but that's exactly what it is and it could be a zillion times worse. But look for strobe lights + glow sticks along with flowing margaritas complete with bumping beats coming from our casita when Simon flies home from his last interview. The day after my due date, baby. 

50 comments:

  1. I love your tone & how real you keep everything!

    I try to keep my blod up front & honest too!

    www.themilehighmom.com

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  2. If I lived closer I'd give you some time off and babysit your kids, or at least hang out so you could have an adult to talk to. Hope this next month flies by for you!

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  3. Amen. This season is rough for all involved. We are living it down here too, so sing/write on, sista!

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  4. I really appreciate these posts. I was thinking of e-mailing you... Will (my husband) starts his emergency medicine residency this summer, but not before an 18+ hour drive north to our new home... YOU CAN DO IT, GRACE!!!!!

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    1. congrats to you both! Hopefully the hours aren't terrible - I think I've heard ER can be decent? Or maybe I'm crazy :)

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  5. I hear ya. Another doctor widow here. It is very hard not to have a moment of resentment when you are cleaning up vomit at 2 am and you know that your husband is, at that very moment, stretched out in a king sized bed at a quiet hotel, slumbering peacefully before the arduous task of attending a conference with adults. My worst was when he was away five nights, and I woke to full scale vomitanado from one or both children every day that he was gone. That was a fun trip. Wisely, my husband did not mention the jet lag, I think it was clear that my tiredness trumped his by about a million. Jet lag is a walk in the park for a mother.

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    1. haha - you're right. jet lag sounds dreamy :)

      No - I know! I definitely get a little jealous of his time away but have to remember it's not like he's not doing work -- I would rather die than face all of these interviews.

      but ... a king sized bed to myself DOES sound pretty nice!

      And why do kids always get sick when Dad is done?? Murphy's Law i think!!

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  6. Not a downer post Patton, it spoke to my solo parenting soul! ha! We are on day three of like 30 or 40? I forget but if yesterday is any indication of how this time without my male counterpart is going to go....I am done for! But I love reading about your adventures ;)

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  7. Well I did pray for grace this very Sunday! Guess it came in the form of a post :) Even your temper tantrum posts are funny. Wish I could come over and take the kids from you for a day!

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  8. Sebastian with the glasses. It's too much. My husband is at JAG School right now going on 7 weeks in gorgeous Alabama weather. He plays frisbee outside and goes to barbecues and plays video games with his dorm roomies, I mean, colleagues. Colleagues. Meanwhile I hide from these tornados in the downstairs bathroom and plot how to make a "triangle of life" with our 2 month old. (NB: do not call your mom who grew up in Oklahoma when the tornado sirens go off.... Not worth it.) And so, the golf pics struck a chord with me. Thanks, as always, for the laughs!

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  9. Love the pictures of Theo. Totally brightened my day. Sorry it had to be at your expense.

    And tell Simon he's not allowed to go on that last interview!!

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  10. Have you ever heard the song, "It Sucks to Be Me" from Avenue Q? Seriously... you can make it your Interview Season theme song. When my boys were little their father was gone a lot of the time but it was usually because he was passed out drunk somewhere and couldn't remember how to get home. True story. At least Dr. P. is legitimately working toward his (soon to be, fingers crossed) lucrative career. You know, eventually. Hang in there, Gracie! You can do it! *hugs*

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  11. If I lived nearby I'd offer to babysit (creepily, since you...don't actually know me) but I hope you get those 9 minutes to yourself soon! Lots of luck to you, Simon and the little Pattons.

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  12. Lord knows you deserve a temper tantrum; I bet your kids have had more than a few on your solo watch.

    The full horror of this solo situation isn't really sinking in for me, because I think I'd be somewhere in a corner by now, clutching desperately to a Cadbury Creme Egg and humming with my eyes closed.

    Or maybe something less dramatic.

    Anyway. Good luck with the remaining travails.

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  13. you fully deserve a temper tantrum! but really i'm just commenting to say that i hope you get to move to austin - the very best city ever! kid-friendly, music and margaritas, BREAKFAST TACOS ALL THE TIME, etc, etc...

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  14. I feel like I could have written this post, Grace (swapping out our husband's very different careers). Although my husband isn't on the road, he might as well be. 6 days out of 7 he's gone from 6 AM to 9 or 10 PM. So that puts me on kid duty (3 under four) all day, every day. And of course I love them and of course I want to be a stay at home mom, but that doesn't mean I have an endless supply of sanity. I don't even have a Costco membership anymore, so I can't even go pick up a Costco size pack of sanity. Maybe you could get me some next time you're there?
    Anyway, point being that I 100%sympathize AND give you mad props for doing all of this whilst wildly pregnant. You deserve a freakin' awesome party. Like so awesome.

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  15. Oh please don't go apologizing! Fatigue, solo-parenting and uncertainty = complain away! I for one think you're awesome! Simon should contemplate an overseas fellowship one day as we have plenty of sunshine here in Australia! But wait that would mean a 24hr flight with your four beautiful babies so maybe that wasn't such a good suggestion! Hang in there x

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  16. Solo parenting is ROUGH. I was raised by a single mom, and sometimes I stop myself and just think how the heck did she do this? I can't wait for my little family to be back together again, and I get through it by reminding myself that it's TEMPORARY. Hope keeps me from murdering everyone! (I'm super positive, too!)

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  17. Grace, hang in there. I feel like this every planting/harvesting season (we farm) and single parenting--especially of three 3 and down--is not easy. Also--my third born was THE most challenging child! 4th does seem to be much easier going.

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    1. oh! yay -- there's hope that I won't have another devil child! Kidding. It's just a phase .... says the naive mom .....

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  18. Sing it, sister. Isn't it so hard not to be mad at them?! My husbando aka dick doctor (he's a urology resident, so it's appropriate, right?) frequently will arrive home late while I'm trying to wrestle my daughter into bed, feed her, and/or attempt to bathe her while she screams bloody murder. It takes everything in me not to flip him the bird. However, that being said, I can't imagine the pressure they are under. This, too, shall pass. On a totally different note, I'm from St. Louis. If you ever need any ideas on where to take the kids for free or very inexpensively, please let me know. My sister lives in the Lou with her three small children and also suffers from the resident's-wife-plague.

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    1. ha. love his official specialty :) So funny!! A fellow resident wife? I wonder if her husband is at Simon's hospital -- would be a small world! I hope this wasn't a call weekend for you and I hope you are nearing the END!!!!

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  19. Haha, I hate the word "season" too... it gets really overused, at least in my (Evangelical Christian) circles... but darned if it doesn't come in handy sometimes. You are a HERO.

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    1. oh, not a hero! but I am glad to have a fellow hater of the word, "season" ... but sometimes it just works. blah :)

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  20. Oh dear! In my best Southern draw..."Bless your sweet little heart". So is Simon going to be home for this birth??

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    1. haha thanks Sarah! Time will tell .... we'll see :)

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  21. Hang in there! We know you can do it! Although I'm voting (in the democracy of the Catholic Church :)...) for living canonization for you because I get annoyed when my husband's gone for half a weekend day and I'm home with my kids -- 10, 8, 5, and 2. I'll pray for you!

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  22. oh I forgot these days--I'm sorry! my husband just worked the whole weekend and I've been home sans truck for 2 days O. M. G. seriously. I am exhausted. When will he be done with interviews? HIRE SOMEONE to come and entertain for you. Go take a nap. Really I'm serious find a teen girl who can entertain a few hours a week and stay home but hide out. or do whatever. You gotta get some time to just breathe. My kids go to school all day so the whole stuck home with kids thing hit me purty dang hard and I feel for you.

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  23. Yikes! Reminds me of deployments, though I wasn't pregnant with the fourth one during any of those (thankfully). It really is a season and it will get better (promise, for real!). And yes the third one is the crazy one. And yes, ice cream. :)

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  24. i love reading your blog and look forward to all your posts, even the "downer" ones. And I feel your pain about the whole husband flying back a day after your due date thing. i just gave birth to my first in December and went into labor on a Monday night when my hubby was away on the residency interview trail. Thank G-d he made it from New York to Boston in record time, got to be there for the actual birth and got his first choice for residency! Not looking forward to the craziness that next year will bring....and I am also hoping for lots of sunshine, chocolate ice cream and extra peanut butter!!

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  25. Have you read Into the Woods? I recently got the Kindle version for my birthday, and it was incredibly readable and interesting. Recommended by my Dad and Anne Bogel. It was a big distraction for me while my husband was in class (he is still doing classes for his PhD during the evenings). I also recently watched Eat Pray Love even though I haven't read that one.

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  26. SCRATCH that.. it's called A Walk in the Woods, the one about the AT.

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    1. Ha - Into the Woods is really scary and A Walk in the Woods is really funny so I am so glad you corrected. I was picturing Grace alone reading the first one…and then writing a post about how she couldn't sleep.

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  27. It feels wrong to be laughing at your misery but you do have such a funny clever way of describing your trials. I hope the weather continues to cooperate for you.

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  28. If we don't laugh about these types of things then what can we laugh at? I had to laugh because I threw a fit the other day that rivals a 2 year old and I am 23.

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  29. I was a Navy wife when my kiddos (now 25, 22, 21, 18) were small and I can relate. My husband was out to sea when the 4th came along and there were many months of single parenthood during those years. I remember one mother's day saying to my husband that it had been 7 YEARS since I had enjoyed 8 hours of uninterupted sleep. He promptly took the kids to the park and mama got a nap! Hang in there, they do get grown and bring all sorts of new and interesting angst to life:).

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  30. Grace, I am really worried about this whole interview/due date conflation situation! Is there anything I can do to help? I already know the answer. But this is serious! WHAAAAAAAT are we going to do??!?! Will he come rushing home if you go into labor? is someone else going to rush to you? I need answers!

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  31. ah grace! just had to comment because i just had an epic meltdown as my husband left for a week long "business" trip with a big side of no-children extra curricular activities. love and prayers. misery loves company, so thank you :) but truly, thank you, love da blog.

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  32. I don't have kids, so I can't even imagine what you deal with every day. Although I can't relate from experience, please know that you have my complete and total respect (and sympathy). Honestly though, I got to the "chocolate ice cream and peanut butter" part of your post and got distracted because...omg, how has that never occurred to me? Must go find both of those things IMMEDIATELY.

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  33. I just had allll 3 babes out at the park (which is stupid because el 19 month old doesn't walk and el 3 month old hates anything not attached to my body, but I digress) and the littlest babe was screaming. My "friend" said that her experience has always always been that 3rd babies just go with the flow and are easy going, to which I replied that my husband and I have zero probability of creating a laid back child from our gene pool. Said "friend" then said, "I don't know how to ask this, but do you think the boys are just feeding off of your anxiety and bad mood?" Cue sword and guillotine. Anyway, this mama of a not so laid back 3 month old (though mine doesn't have teething to blame so I'm totally screwed) is enjoying the company in her misery. Hopefully new teeth = happy Theo.

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    1. Oh, yes. It would be extremely unlikely for us to have other than (ahem) sensitive, high-strung children given who their parents are. Knowing that keeps me from being surprised but it doesn't keep me from being just a tad envious of that magical laid back 2nd and 3rd, etc. child.

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  34. Wow, I just got my hopes up really high that you may end up in Austin!!!

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  35. I'm right there with you, but for completely different reasons (no husband jetting off, no kids...you are in my prayers super mom!). Oh life!

    P.S. Austin?! That would be wonderful!

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  36. I would most likely keep most of it. Seems like some awesome stuff! !!

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  37. I would most likely keep most of it. Seems like some awesome stuff! !!

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  38. Ok so whenever I whine and complain about getting through the week and counting down the slow hours until my husband comes home, I need to think of you and your situation. Because hello traditional work hours over here. You're tough, you amaze me. Seriously.

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  39. It sounds lame to say this, but I don't know how you do it. I know we just do what we have to do and all that, but oh boy, I take my hat off to you. I've had a wee bit of a taste of this recently with my husband traveling some or working and then being laid up from two surgeries, but I just need to put on a little bit of Grace perspective sometimes I guess!! I'm thinking of you!

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  40. Grace! Grace! Grace! Grace! Your cheering section in VA is praying for you and your sanity over the next few weeks. You are a rock star Mama and I know you can do it. Blessings friend. feel free to complain/rant/talkitout anytime sista!

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  41. I so hope you are blogging in 5 years when Simon has his first year of being a full fledged doctor, and you can write about how awful it was to have him home for dinner 65% of the time and how jealous everyone is of your lucky family with a dad who is a doctor (you know there will be haters then, right? you can point them to this exact post). You deserve to vent and what your doing is hard and on some days I really do think God flows extra graces to Grace because you handle it with grace and I have been there with my third baby and a heavily gone husband and whoa. Very. Difficult. He was around more with #4 and it was not as hard, so I think often of you! Also my best friend is in a fellowship 5 hours away and I get to see her alot i.e. there is a lot of free time in fellowship during some periods. Cue Pearl Jam's 'Better Days' on your next stroll around the hood - yours are coming.

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  42. Serious question: how old is Simon's brother? Because I have a lovely friend I could set him up with... :)

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