Friday, September 29, 2006

Growing Pains

Life has been getting crazy around here. Some days I feel like I am in over my head.

Char's brain is growing so fast she can't keep up to it. There are words on the tip of her tongue and things that she desperately wants to say that don't come out. She took her first real steps last night. She wants to know everything, touch everything, dig into everything. When she can't have her way, either because Mom said so or she is physically unable, she screams. And screams. It is a scream that makes me feel like I am losing my mind. She is becoming more clingy and needy lately and I think it is because she is learning so much that it is scary to her. This means that around 4:30 PM when she used to nap she screams. This is the time I ususally cook dinner. Her screaming sometimes freaks Emm out and he starts to cry. I then want to cry/scream. Sometimes I do. I take every ounce of self-control I have and I manage to stay, despite every instinct telling me to run away.

Emm is making real progress with his therapy. He is making consonant sounds sometimes. This is a big deal. He "talks" on the phone with my Mom and kisses her goodbye. This is huge. He shares his cheerios willingly at playgroup. (Only with the pretty girls) He is smart enough to reach the things I have set out of the way. He can work the disc drive on our computer. He can work the CD player in the kitchen. He can reach the "child-proof" latch on the pantry door. He can use my kitchen stepladder to get the food I put high shelves for a reason. When you say "No" to him he doesn't get angry like Char, he feels hurt. His eyes well up with tears and he buries his head in your lap. I feel like a monster when I get upset with him.

What's a Mom to do? I spent the beginning of this week feeling sorry for myself and eating chocolate and weeping, and occaisonally screaming and slamming doors. I got some uplifting peptalks from my mommy friends Sarah and Cheryl (thanks ladies--you don't know how much you helped me) It is time for me to put on my big-girl pants and make some changes.

  1. Make a daily to-do list. I never understood the power of a to-do list. Write stuff down? Do it? Cross it off? Oh yeah! Instead of saying to myself "What the heck did I do today?" I can see what I did, even if there is seeming chaos around me. I think this will also help calm my swirling thoughts down too.
  2. Prep/cook dinner during Char's naptime. I was balking against this one. Naptime is *my* time. I set Emm up with a craft and a movie, then I can curl up with my knitting or a book. This will have to be sacrificed so I can stop the screaming at 4:30. Hopefully it is temporary.
  3. Breathe
  4. Stop working at 9:30PM, even if there is still work to do. I know I need at least one hour a day that is not for childcare and housework or I will not be climbing out of my hole any time soon.
  5. Get out of the House. Playgroup twice a week, therapy once, stretching out errands to last all week, playdates whenever we can.
  6. Less coffee, more water. Maybe part of my problem is that I am too jacked up on caffeine?

That's all I have so far. Is there anything I'm missing? I think I can see a pinprick of light at the end of this tunnel--I just need to keep moving, right?


Anonymous said...

Darling, frazzled darling, may I suggest a "Ta Da" list instead? When your kids are totally kickin' your ass, having a to do list can set you up for feelings of failure for what you didn't get to. But writing down the things you did accomplish makes a very positive statement.

And don't forget to put parenting things on there. We get so wrapped up in the sweeping and the laundry that sometimes we forget things like : "give kisses", "read a book aloud", "tickle them". That's part of our job, too.


Mrs. Nielsen said...

I like you, Sarah/Poppins!


PS I like you, too, Jennifer, but Poppins' comments seem fitting for my day, too.