I am IN IT.

I’m totally 100% in the thick of it with three kids ages four and under. I recently said to someone how it feels like we’re finally getting into a good groove of life now that we’re out of the newborn stage again. We just celebrated my youngest daughter’s first birthday and I was going on about how I’ve been feeling good about where we were.

And then, almost as soon as those words escaped my lips, things felt overwhelming again.

That’s motherhood I guess.

The highs are high. Like waking up to the best kisses from the cutest 1-year-old who was placed in my bed by my hard-working husband (with a kiss from him, too) before he left for work. Like the magic that is snuggling with my 2-year-old. Like randomly hearing, “Mom, you’re a really great mama” from my 4-year-old.

Some days I’m just in awe of this life I lead, and these three little girls I’ve created. Some days it all lines up—the good attitudes, the seamless plans, the cooperation—the happiness is abundant, the worries are few and the beauty of motherhood shines.

But then the lows are low. Like crying in the shower (a shower I hardly even have any energy for, but know will be good for my soul) after a day of shuffling the kids this way and that way, while my brain was checking things off one after the other, while my heart was pounding faster and faster each time I watched a fall or bump, while my anxiety increased with each scream or whine I heard.

Some days I don’t know how I’m going to do it all. The weight of the world feels like it’s crushing my shoulders. Some days I have to force myself to ask for help from someone because I feel like I’m drowning—and I desperately need their lifeline.

And most days I experience highs and lows. The ups and downs and zigs and zags happen in the span of hours, minutes even.

As you can see—I am so IN IT right now.

With a home and a mortgage and toys and loads and loads (and loads) of laundry.

With random paint splatterings on the wall and dirty clothes on the floor and—what the heck is this, anyway??

With the cleaning and the cooking and the figuring out how to get it all done in 24 hours.

With to-do lists and running mental lists of motherhood, remembering and planning and fixing.

With a husband and a marriage and trying to find time together, trying to make time together.

With needing and craving more time with my kids and hating the busyness that takes me or my mind away from them.

I am IN IT.

With the anxiety and worry and stress. And the frustration and anger.

With the inadequacy and guilt and fear.

With the loneliness and weariness and sadness.

With the joy and the mess and the beauty.

With the awe and the gratitude and the happiness.

I am IN IT.

With the missed events and pictures without me to prove it.

With the “one day’s” and the “future goals lists.”

With the hustling and the burnouts.

With the late nights and the early mornings.

With the exhaustion and the appreciation.

With the pity parties and the heavy moments.

I am IN IT.

I’m in it so deep right now I’ve lost myself a little. I’m caring—physically, mentally, emotionally—for three tiny humans. I’m tending to my marriage. I am putting myself last. I am not making the time for myself that I deserve.

My eyes are wide open to these facts, and I don’t plan on life being like this forever. I am aware and I am ready to work on finding myself again. And slowly but surely with time, I know I will.

This is where I need to be right now. And this is where I want to be.

I am IN IT with my heart. With my soul. With every fiber of my being.

And I will be back. And I will do the work to rediscover myself and reconnect with who I am and what that means to me. But right now, I’m IN IT.

A version of this post was published October 22, 2018. It has been updated.