AVA FULL OF GRACE #6: She’s Driving Me Insane.

November 6, 2013 |  by  |  Ava Full Of Grace, My Stories

In my 20’s, I was a force to be reckoned with.  I was in superior shape, had great metabolism and could literally eat a handful of dirt and wash it down with a handle of Banker’s Club vodka and go run a marathon.

But I’m not 20 anymore.  I’m on the backside of my 30’s, feeling like I’ve been thrown out of a moving car on the highway, tumbling down a steep grade of loose shale towards 40.  After being ‘on watch’ full-time for my two toddlers for a few years, I’m now a full cup of anxiety.

For instance… this morning I was in the shower, trying to have 10 minutes of quiet, spa-like calm to center myself (please, no masturbation jokes).  We even have a tile seat in the shower (I’ve finally made it) to sit down on and rest after waking up with Charlie sitting on my face with a loaded diaper asking why his iPad didn’t work.

Once a rock-solid Steve McQueen-type (considerate embellishment) who could dive out of an airplane and survive for a week in the desert by eating broken glass… I’m now a ‘nervous nilly’ with matching car seats in the back.

I lose my mind when the kids stand up in their chairs at dinnertime.  I am paranoid about markers without caps.  I feel faint when I see kids running with lollipops in their mouths.

Is this normal?

I decided to take a backseat, er, passengers seat rather, with my parenting style, just for a minute.

Not a great idea.  This is what it looked like.

Daddy and Ava at Pitt Childrens Museum carThis car isn’t even moving.  It doesn’t have an engine.

In fact, this car is in the middle of the Pittsburgh Children’s Museum, an amazing place with an incredible staff if you’re ever in the area.

But that’s neither here nor there.  What’s troubling is how ‘on edge’ I am.

I’m now that fragile hand-blown ornate Easter egg in your mom’s hutch at home.  I’m a delicate flower nearing the end of Autumn that’s about to lose it’s petals.  I’m the frazzled crazy lady at the grocery store struggling to write a check to the cashier.

Let’s just hope that I’m not on the verge of Michael Douglas in ‘Falling Down’…

michaeldouglasThe bottom line is that while I think my kids are driving me insane, I think I’m my own worst enemy sometimes.  I think I just need to remind myself that back in the day, kids didn’t even ride in car seats, parents smoked with the windows up and nothing was BPA-free and we all survived.

Time to fix my broken glasses, sit back and figure it out…

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:  Adrian Kulp is a blogger, author, TV producer and full-time stay-at-home dad.  His first book for Penguin Publishing, a comedic parenting memoir, debuted in May of 2013.  He currently writes Dad or Alive, as well as for The Huffington Post.  He’s a member of Target’s Inner Circle and a contributor to Kids in the House.  He most recently produced ‘Modern Dads’ for A&E.



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I too am deathly afraid of markers without caps. They are the bane of my existence. At my age (several years older than you apparently) and with more kids, I have learned to hold on to that fear and use it. When things are quiet, investigate. Take that nervousness you live with 24 hours a day and let it keep you getting up in the morning because you don't know what deadly crap your kids are getting into without your supervision. Yeah, it's a slippery slope. I think I may be too far down it to be rational.


My mom totally hot boxed us in the car - it's great to remember that when you're feeling overwhelmed!