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My first car was a really old, beat-up car that I would drive to my night classes at the local college.  To get to the campus, I had to climb a steep hill and I would always pat the dashboard and try to convince my car that everything would be better once we got to the top of the hill. My car would make funny noises and once in a while would seem like it was about to just give up, but I kept pressing it on and kept promising that the top of the hill would bring with it great relief as we started to cruise down to the campus.

Yes, I talk to my cars…especially when they are old and cranky.

I feel like my life lately has been like trying to make it up that steep hill.  The kids have had a really tough time with their dad being gone and I've been stressed out because I'm not used to dealing with the kids without any breaks once in a while. They're upset, I'm exhausted, and all in all everything has not been running so smoothly.

This last week, however, things have seemed to have eased up a little. My kids have had far fewer tantrums. Yesterday my son nonchalantly told his friend, "My Daddy is far, far away," and didn't get upset about it. This is a big change from the frequent outbursts we've been dealing with around here lately.

As for me, I've started to feel a little calmer lately. I don't know if this is because the kids have calmed down a bit or if it is what caused them to calm down, but things have been flowing a little more smoothly. We go about our days, running our errands and having our fun, and at the end of the day after the kids have gone to bed I enjoy working in peace.

I won't make the claim that I've made it entirely over that steep hill yet, but I think that maybe — just maybe — I've done a good enough job of convincing myself that I can indeed make it, and that makes it just a little easier to keep going.

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