My children are (in my completely objective opinion) very bright. They ask lots of questions, they test boundaries, they fight, they play 5 million imaginary games. It’s fun! it really is. It can also be exhausting.
I am the quiet, thinky type. I like to be alone in my own head. I like to read. I like to sit down some damn where.
Of course this never happens when the kids are up. So, by the time bedtime rolls around I’m tapped out. I need to crawl back into my shell to rejuvenate.
I’m writing this in the dark, underneath my covers. And it feels amazing.
I had a really good day, but I’m also really tired. I met with a new friend who is also a writer, I got some time to window shop, I had a quiet meal to myself.
So, this is all I got. But it still counts as a NaBloPoMo post! See ya here tomorrow when I’ll have 35 percent more gumption. Promise!
The good news is, I am not limping.
Today was not exactly anything to write home about. Why? Doesn’t really matter. Mostly stuff that isn’t important in the grand scheme of the universe, but that mattered very much to me in the moment.
But, here I am. The day is over. I survived it. The moments passed and the kids went to bed early. And I’m not stumbling, limping or even crying (at the moment).
Instead, I am stubbornly optimistic. I am trying very hard to walk in the light because I’ve been in the dark and it sucks there.
I have spent the last few years adjusting to where I am now. Trying to make neat piles of the vast amount of stuff you inherit when you become a parent. Education, discipline, love, fun, respect. Can you even wrap your mind around how huge those words are when they hand you your tiny newborn?
Anyway, the point is, I feel like I’m…not lost right now. My path is still a complete mystery, but I’m strong enough to take it. I won’t limp. I will walk. I may even run eventually.
I used to think I was a slacker, but it turns out that I’m actually a perfectionist. That means that if I don’t think I’m going to do something perfectly, I don’t do it at all.
I’m going to try to flip this tendency right on its head (at least for a little while) by taking part in BlogHer’s NaBloPoMo challenge. I’m gonna write here everyday. Every day! I’m scared. But I’m gonna do it! Whee!
So. Apparently kids are people. You can, like, communicate with them and stuff.
So, like I said before, bedtime has been a struggle for me with Cameron and Grace for a while now. But this week, I had an idea! I would tell them what I wanted them to do, instead of assuming they knew and then getting mad when they didn’t. So, after baths, we have been having about a half-hour of wind down time where we watch some tv or read a book. Then, at 8:30, I turn to them.
“Cameron and Grace,” I say. “Do you know what time it is?”
Then, one of them usually says “bedtime.” Or, “butts.” Whatever.
“And what do I expect from you?”
Then we go over what I expect: for them to lie down BY THEMSELVES, to be quiet and to go to sleep. Bedtime has been so much better since I started this! Cameron is naturally more likely to go to sleep, so this is his cue to settle down in his bed. Grace has a little more energy (plus, she’s younger) so it takes a little more time to settle her down. When she tries to ask for juice and toys and whatever else, I calmly repeat that it’s bed time and time to go to sleep.
Honestly, I think it’s more because laying it out there like that helps me not feel crazy and angry and frustrated. So then they follow suit.
I don’t want to jinx it or anything, but if this actually ends up working? Wooooooooo!
The absolute best parts of my day are walking Cameron and Grace into daycare. That’s because we’re not doing much of anything except being together. I’m not trying to force them into clothes. They aren’t fighting. I’m not scrambling to prepare a meal. We’re just holding hands and walking.
Holding a big person’s hand is just a simple thing that a little kid does. It’s such an expression of trust.
If anyone out there knows how to bottle this feeling for later, when they are in the midst of teenage angst, please let me know.
The holidays plus one traveling spouse mean that I have no brain space for writing. I’ll be back after the new year. Happy holidays!
I was never one of those girls who always knew she’d be a wife and mother, so adjusting to those titles has taken some work. I’m still learning and I’d like to share what I’ve learned here. I’ve found that the internet is a great resource for learning about what I need to know, so I’d love to hear from other people out there, too.
Please read, enjoy and comment!
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