So I'm hiding from the children, though technically I don't think it's as bad as it sounds. Not that there haven't been moments where I've shut myself in a closet or bathroom, lights turned off and tears streaming down, begging for a few brief seconds of silent, solitary confinement. For now, though, I'm just laying in bed for a few moments, feeling the breeze weave in through the open windows, enjoying the baby being (somewhat unhappily) in bed for a little bit, the big kids watching (very happily, now that we've majorly limited) cartoons for a little bit, and waiting for the feeling of peace to wash over me for a little bit before our evening begins.
I think I've come to realize the need for the little bits of hiding I squeeze in through these days and weeks. For 300 seconds the children will all be safe and happy and learning small lessons in their own solitary moments, while Mom gets her head and her heart and her soul in all the right places before a new phase (dinnertime, bathtime, bedtime) requires her to be fully present.