I’m sorry I ate your marshmallow.

You know, that overpriced one from the farmer’s market that I rolled my eyes at when you asked for it. It’s been sitting patiently in the pantry for a week now, yet you had to have it. I had to have it, too, so I guess I understand.

Getting you off to school this morning was an Olympic event. Your brother was tired from an early wake up and screamed the entire way home, and caffeine just wasn’t cutting it anymore. That chocolate covered marshmallow, filled with caramel and layered with graham crackers, was taunting me as I went into the pantry to grab a granola bar. You get it, right?

Being a mom of young kids is a stage of life indescribable to any who aren’t deep in its trenches, experiencing it firsthand. It’s almost like childbirth, how quickly we forget about the pain and messiness, simply choosing to relish in the good. We’re biologically programmed that way, or there would be no such thing as siblings.

I just heard a crash.

I don’t want to know — ignorance is bliss, right? I’ll just sit here quietly in the dark, finishing your marshmallow.

I heard a giggle. Ok, that’s a good sign. Your brother is still breathing and apparently happy, wherever he is.

Well rested? What is that? I’m honestly not sure anymore. It’s not your fault, because you and your brother are pretty great about bedtime. It’s just that nights are the only time that I don’t have tiny people crawling all over me, physically and emotionally vying for my attention and sometimes making me feel like — dare I say it — I want to crawl out of my own skin. I take this time to work, or relish in a cold glass of beer, catching up on crappy Netflix shows or scrolling mindlessly through my social media. You know, anything to feel like I’m getting a piece of myself back. Here’s where I am right now:

I’m at the stage of life where I sacrifice sleep to get that much needed “me” time, because I truly covet it.

I’m at the stage of life where cleaning my house means picking things up off the counters or floor, putting them away, and calling it good.

I’m at the stage of life where organic Mac & Cheese is a completely acceptable breakfast, lunch, or dinner — and somehow the package saying “organic” makes me feel like it’s a little healthier, even though I know that this is very likely not the case. Don’t shame me, ok?

I’m at the stage of life where we sometimes live out of clean laundry bins because the idea of washing, folding, and putting away the laundry is just too much for me to handle right now.

I’m at the stage of life where sometimes weekends are more difficult than weekdays because entertaining everyone and toting them around to activities is higher maintenance than a quiet weekday filled with park trips and preschool.

I’m at the stage of life where there are so many house projects I want to do, but finding the time to even paint a wall is literally impossible. The list will just have to collect dust right now.

I’m at the stage of life where there are a lot of weeds in my yard, and the landscaping needs some serious TLC — but being homeowners now, we swore we’d do it ourselves because sweat equity is fun, right?

I’m at the stage of life where a quiet house either means nap time, or something terrible is happening.

I’m at the stage of life where a crazy Friday night means seeing a movie or dinner sans kids, and we’re home by midnight.

I’m at the stage of life where I look forward to holidays, not because of what I’ll receive, but because of the looks on my kids’ faces when they relive the magic that I remember so fondly.

I’m at the stage of life where my one-year-old melts perfectly into my arms, and I hold on tightly because as I glance at my almost thirteen-year-old, I know it won’t always be like this. It passes so quickly.

I’m at the stage of life where teeth and babbles are celebrated, where restaurants are chosen based on whether or not they have an attached playground (thanks, Austin!), and where marriage is tested and stretched to almost a breaking point at times.

I’m at the stage of life where cupcakes and Paw Patrol band-aids can fix almost anything.

And where I’m so tired that I can’t sleep, because I’m up at night thinking about not only how much I have to get done the next day, but also about how much I love these little people I created.

So, please. Stop eating the dog biscuits.

Stop turning on the faucet and trying to climb into the tub when I’m not looking.

Stop growing up right before my eyes.

Thank you for this life and the indescribable joy you have added to it.

And thanks for the marshmallow. It was delicious.

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