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I lost it yesterday morning. I mean, I really lost it.

Moxie was hiding inside the dresser drawer, scarfing down popcorn after I told her countless times to get ready so we could go downstairs (in the hotel) and get breakfast (which would be over in 10 minutes). The boys seemed to have acquired her temporary deafness, it was like talking to thin air. Laundry was piled in the corner to somehow do, towels, toys and clothes strewn all over the room.

And I just lost it. 

I went to bed and ugly cried.

I get tired of the constant shepherding, “come on, come on, let’s GO!”, of packing bags and shlepping from one place to another. Of being the memory of the group, “Micah, are you sure you want to leave your iPad on the table?” Of the 4 bathroom trips that invariably happen as soon as ordered food in a restaurant arrives. I’m tired of the wailing, the whining, the whinging, the fighting. Oh my God, the fighting!

“Mommmmmmmmmmy! Moxie hit me with Elsa!” – waaaaaaaaaah, THWUMP, “MaaaaaaaacccK!!!!!!!!!” bellows Moxie. “Mack, did you just hit Moxie?” I ask. “Yes, but she didn’t give me my backpack.”

Micah will happily join in on the fighting, making it all about Pokemon and crazy ninja moves. Mack gets all amped up with it, wants to practice on Moxie. And there you go. Again, and again and again.

Sometimes I read other blogs and it’s like, holy shit. Are my kids the only ones who fight? They are, aren’t they. I managed to breed the only children in the world who just can’t stop.

For the 20 minutes a day that they aren’t fighting (or asleep), how come I don’t treasure those moments?? How come I’m not all “sweet chubby limbs and bright faces” and I’m just like, “SIT  the hell DOWWWWWWWWWN!!!!

I am constantly tired.

I am not sure how much of this is just needing a break, how much is the cumulative stress of Dana being shot, still in the ICU, and likely to be in the ICU for a couple of weeks more. How much of this is the worry of what this is going to mean for him, for his family, and for my family. How much of this is the anxiety that I feel by the fact that the guys who shot him are still loose and we don’t know if it was a random or intentional robbery/shooting. Anxiety, because my nephews are young men who are visible and public and I don’t want anything to happen to them. Things don’t feel safe to me.

And I am tired from my body not being mine – sleeping with the kids in the hotel king-sized bed, their bodies all over mine, night after night. Writing in the morning with Mack on my lap (as he is now). I love their love and yet I need to be alone.

While I usually love being deaf, I am now tired of the strain of trying to hear and figure things out. I’m even tired of telling nurses that I lipread, and the whole “I’m sorry” responses, “mumble mumble mumble.”

I’m tired.

The kids are up. The end.





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  1. Jesusita Sandoval says:

    Awwwwe , I wish I knew where u were and I would have asked 2 b dropped off with u !!! ….this suxxxxxx and we are bout 2 go home again and I didn’t even get 2 see u or kids again?????

    1. I wish you could… hopefully I’ll know when you come next time and be able to spend more time with you. xo

  2. idlehouse says:

    hugs Meriah. 4 is the loneliest number when 3 arent adults 🙁

  3. It’s not easy and you are going through so much. I find the same with my kids in hotels that after long stretches I need not to be constantly touched.

    All kids fight. We currently are in charge of 3 and the fighting is more than when there were 2. It’s a hard number. But again all kids fight.

    You are getting through this and you will. One day at a time. Hugs from Canada.

    1. Thanks, Sarah. It’s also nice to know that I’m not the only one who needs to not be constantly touched. I feel kind of awful about that sometimes.
      Thanks again for the love. xo

  4. It’s shitty situation all round. But from here it looks like you’re all doing the very best you can. This too shall pass. Here’s hoping you get some relief and much needed rest—and soon!

  5. Fiona Strahan says:

    Dear Meriah you are in the centre of the cyclone of trauma and distress.
    You’ve been stretched from pillar to post of high stress.
    You have to ‘poing’ at some point.
    As has already been wisely said 1 adult 3 kids –
    Stressed, exhausted mother – not able to say go play in the woods!
    Kids not in routine and different place
    Grief and love swirling everywhere
    You being sister, aunt, daughter, mother.
    Exhaustion from communication
    Hospital and Hotel – Streuth.

    And then there is the crime. The absolute horror of that and the uncertainty and lack of knowledge around this.
    That bit I do know.
    I can’t do anything practical from here, but I wonder if there are org’s that could help out. Take the kids out for a day.
    I don’t know what city you are in, but if there is a volunteer centre where people could help out in practical ways.
    As for kids fighting – I have two teenagers who can stand each other 99% of the time. Complain, whinge, swear at each other, pit the other against us.
    I wish I was there I’d give you a massage, take the kids to the movies and let you sleep.
    Much love to you at this absolutely horrendous time xxxxxx

    1. Thank you so much, Fiona! Thanks for your kind words of support, and also for telling me about your kids!
      Love, right back at you. xoxo

  6. BW aka Barbara from Boston says:

    Ugly crying is probably what you needed. Its a tension release, but not a release from the whole horrible ordeal.You are missing home and space, and Mikey and routine, and school starting – when the older kids would be gone for several hours a day. So sorry about your brother- Dana is in my prayers. Wish there was more I could do.
    I am sure all the older members of your family are feeling it too. Could individuals take a kid and do some activity w/ each child. This might give you a few moments of peace w/ your brother. Also, can you find a dollar store and buy some new things for thew kids to do and sit them in separate spaces w/ their new puzzles, rag dolls books etc.
    Is hospital staff doing passive physical therapy exercise w/ Dana? This is important so muscles don’t atrophy. Perhaps they could show the adults how to move his limbs. It would be something each of you could work on w/ him. It might make you all feel like you are doing something positive for him, make you feel some needed hope. The routine movement may spark some normalcy for him and each of you.
    Love to all. Barbara

    1. Thank you Barbara. You are wonderful.
      I think you are right and wise – it sounds like I was just missing home and space, Mikey and routine. And the peace and solitude of it all out here (I’m home now).

      My Mom took care of the kids so I could go in to see Dana. It being the ICU, the kids are not allowed. He’s also very much glued to his 50 or so bags, the countless IV wires and dialysis wires and blood tubes, not to mention the leg and stomach that were only sewn closed a couple of days ago. The PT sounds really necessary but it’s impossible to move him much at this point.

      Thank you so much for the comment and love. xoxo

  7. I found your blog through “love that max” blog, because I have 3 sons on the spectrum and am always looking for different voices in blogs. This is a different subject…but I had never heard of the term “third culture kid,” until I read this blog. It explains so much to me about myself! Being a military brat, who’s parents moved me to Japan when I was 6 weeks old, and then all over the world the list “you know you’re a tck if…”was a revelation. No wonder, the thought of “settling down,” in one place isn’t as appealing to me as those of my acquaintances that moved rarely. No wonder, my husband and I(who was born and bred in NYC) have such different world views. I didn’t intend on learning something about myself when I read this blog, but I am sure glad that I did!

    1. It’s so funny, isn’t it!! The TCK thing really does explain a lot. I went through a ‘holy cow’ moment too when I first heard of it and read about it.
      Thanks for the comment and I’m looking forward to getting to know you!

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