Kris Bartels | Peace in the Chaos
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Peace in the Chaos

Chaos is a part of life and it tends to happen more frequently than most people would like.  In those times of chaos, your approach and attitude make the difference between stressing over the moment, or embracing the challenges and making the most of it.  Fix or alter your attitude, and you can take control of the chaos.

I write this at 5:30 am, the morning after my first day on the job as a Dad of two.  You see, it has been three months since we had our second kid and during the past three months, my wife has been home with our newest addition and has been able to help out and keep things under control while I was at work.  That dynamic has changed since my wife had to go back to work.

It was easy before.  People would say how hard it is with two kids compared to one kid.  For me, it is all about perspective.  It is my approach and attitude that I keep in check when handling the Daddy Duties.  I’m not saying that it is any harder now that I have both kids for an extended time, but there are definitely challenges.  Challenges that I embrace and face head-on.

For some context, here is my daily schedule…

4:30-5:00 am – Wake Up

5:00-6:45 am – Gym/Work/Me Time

7:00 am – 2:45 pm – High School Teacher

3:00 pm – pick up my 2 1/2-Year-Old (Bishop)

3:10-7:00 pm – Daddy Duties with my 2 1/2-Year-Old and 3-month-old son

7:00-8:00 pm – Make dinner/Eat Dinner

8:00-8:45 pm – Bath and Get 2 1/2-Year-Old in bed

9:00-11:59 pm – Clean Up/Couch Time/Personal Time/Bed

As for the challenges, I never really feel like I have them under control.  It is more like managing the situation to achieve the result as close as possible as to what I expect.  With Bishop, he is at the age where I can tell him what to do and he listens about 20% of the time.  That 20% is awesome.  The other 80% is split between Bishop kind of doing some of the stuff I ask of him, and not doing any of it.  This is where my patience comes into play.

I am not trying to sound like a horrible dad when I say this, but I try to stay detached when he doesn’t listen.  For as much as I know that he can listen and does follow instruction some of the time, I also understand that he is only 2 1/2-Years-Old and that he has his own agenda.  Staying detached during the time where he wants to follow his own agenda is coming to keep the gray hairs away, as well as keep my blood pressure down.

It is crazy to think that this time last year, our situation was totally different.  Our newborn had just become a thought as we found out my wife was pregnant, and life with a 1-year-old was getting easy.  Little did I know how much life would change with two kids.  I smile when I think about it because I know that no matter how chaotic life may seem and how wild the new dynamic is within the house, it doesn’t last forever.

I am making the decision to embrace these moments, cherish the chaos, and make the most of the time I with my sons every day.

If you are in a similar situation, or are expecting to be a dad, it goes by quick.  Don’t blink.  Emrace it.