One thing at a time. It’s not one day at a time. It’s like labor. You cannot take another ten hours of contractions, but you can take this one right now.
Perhaps it was because of my 37-week pregnant belly, my rambunctious two-year-old and my five- and seven-year old chattering at me that I got a lot of sympathetic looks and comments that basically said, “I don’t know how you manage.” It’s not much different now that I’m not pregnant and the kids are all a couple of years older; just add an attached 18mo to the mix of older siblings!
I understand a little more when a man says he doesn’t know how I manage, but often it’s women, especially older women or those with fewer children. To the mother of fewer, I do it the same way as you, as I mentioned above. I just may have to take more breaths, or gasps, as the case may be. The older women amuse me because many times they say they even had as many or more children than me but cannot recall how they made it through.
The truth is that we do what we have to do, and maybe nature plays another one of those mind tricks so we forget how difficult life, especially childrearing can be. Undoubtedly it’s every bit as difficult as childbearing, if not more so! Se here we go, off to do more breathing.