It feels like we never settled into a new groove since the newest addition to our family joined in May. Between one virus after another, being unable to get any help due to these illnesses, and the severe sleep deprivation that has settled into a semi-permanent brain fog, I'm not feeling like myself.
The rise in anti-semitism is scary and mentally draining. The threat feels real and ever present.
On top of that I'm feeling a lot of financial pressure. I know we've been hearing about "inflation" and "rising costs" as buzz words in news snippets whenever I can catch them or on social media posts, but I didn't realize how much it affects us until I saw a trend in the grocery shopping. I still do most of my shopping on an app and then pick up. It not only helps me stick to a list but I save an hour or two of walking around the store. I usually buy the same items so I can easily add them to my cart in the middle of a meeting or late night feeding and fit it into my day somehow. But that means I can also easily see the price increases over the past few months and it's insane. We're not buying exotic food. Eggs, milk, cheese, fruit, and vegetables.... all skyrocketed. I'm not even buying that much. The 5 lb bag of flour is now at $6.59 -- what? Switching brands immediately. There's the option to shop around and buy the cheapest things in different stores but I'm barely holding it together so I don't know if I can handle trying to add that to my mental load.
It keeps bringing up the idea that I need to come up with more income. We're not spenders so it's not a question of pinching somewhere. Either me or my husband or both of us need to bring in more money. It's a scary economy right now and I'm worried about leaving stable work. On the other hand I shouldn't have to transfer money from savings just to be able to afford milk or formula for my babies. Yes, formula. I'm still pumping but the use of decongestants over the summer tanked my supply and I'm stuck underproducing. That story has its own baggage of stress.
I've also been stressing out about the exorbitant cost of summer childcare. Daycare in general is so expensive but for some reason reliable, licensed, good care over the summer months is even more expensive. I'm looking at nearly $7,000 for both of them for only eight weeks and it doesn't even cover the gap weeks between school and camp. Not only is it so much money, but these programs also want you to pay in full months in advance to hold the spot. Another dip into savings??
I considered maybe traveling for part of the summer by maybe cobbling together something with points and credit card miles and stay with family. It will still cost a lot and we don't have the paid time off of work but that might be a wash considering the alternative. I want to make it work because I love the idea of taking my babies to see the world. I'm not sure if it's the financially responsible choice though.
I think the first step is to get more than 45 min of sleep. The world looks different on the other side of a good rest. I know this is a season. I know we'll get past it. I know we'll figure it all out. I just don't know the path from where we are now to where we want to be. I hear memes mention adultier adults and I feel like that's what I'm looking for - just someone to help me out of the plateau I seem to be stuck in and help me help myself. Or someone to write a check for a lot of money and tuck me in for a long nap.