Tuesday, September 20
Noah's turn for bedding on the clothesline...
Needless to say, he has had a few setbacks with potty training.
It continually astounds me how these children we bring into the world are the utter, absolute BEST part of our day....
And the utter, absolute WORST.
Potty-training setbacks fall into the WORST part of my day.
I am not proud of how it makes me feel to see this kid willingly, stubbornly poop in his underwear, literally 30 minutes after I had him sit on the toilet for ten long minutes-- AMPLE opportunity to get the job done in the right place.
Since the day we brought him home from the hospital, nearly four years ago, he manages to bring me so much pure, unadulterated JOY and light. But when he ruins my day, WATCH OUT. I am at my lowest low. Lucky for him (and me), the last year of our lives together have been pretty even-leveled, and I haven't felt true despair with him in a long time. So I guess today's feelings were overdue. And gosh darn it all--- even when I want to throttle this kid for that poop fiasco... all he has to do is be his true sweet self and I am back in the euphoria of being his mama.
(Do I spy some baby legs?)
For example: one rough day a few weeks ago (unrelated to the poop fiascoes), when I was at my lowest, he asked me how my day was. I couldn't keep it in anymore and I started crying and said simply, "I'm just really really sad." He walked right over to me and said, "I can give you the biggest hug and you will feel better!"... and he did just that. The sweetest hug, and I was consumed with love for this kid.
He is my highest high, I swear it.
And this stinker:
(Dontcha love her Build-a-Bear Surgeon's Hat??)
She has been AMAZING lately. Her chubbo cheeks and that smile. Her gaspy exclamations of joy. The way she devours her bunny lovey like he was her long-lost twin... She is HAPPINESS all bottled up into one small, chubby, wiggly body.
After two weeks of being AMAZING for nap and bedtime put-downs, she decided the last couple of days to mess with the status quo. Like the Borg, she becomes hip to all my tricks and defies them, one by one. She is unstoppable. Today, especially, every trick in the book failed, one by one. And I was left to let her cry herself to sleep... helpless to do much else.
Lowest low, I tell you--- hearing your baby wail on a baby monitor that manages to AMPLIFY the ugliness of crying... Knowing that even trying to console her at this point would only make her cry harder.... The frustration and helplessness of that.
But then.... eventually.... both kids are napping. My window next to my computer is open to the lovely September breezes. I have time for a tall glass of chocolate milk and some photo editing.... Pinterest surfing... relaxing... All is quiet-- even that monstrous baby monitor...
And this photo comes up in Lightroom:
My babies. After only an hour break from them, feeling revived a bit, it is possible I MISS them? Of course it is. They are my highest high. The BEST part of my day. I live for their smiles and their love.
And that, dear friends, is why we keep going, day after day... Even when potty training threatens to kill us. Even when babies start teething or husbands have to work late. We live for the highs.... so we push through the lows. And eventually, the bad stuff fades out of memory and we get to remember mostly the good.
And if it seems the lows just keep a-coming?
My cure, what works for me, is just to find one small way to be creative in the day.... Make SOMETHING pretty to counteract the uglies in my heart.
Even if on a bad day, it's just getting clever with Ramen and hot dogs:
(Dinner for Noah and myself on one of those long days where Joe has late class.... The idea is from the Taste of Home "Fun Food" edition!)
Even one little creative thing really moves my heart back on track as a mama... Maybe it does the same for you?
Ah.... Kid #1 is up from naps.... The break is over. Gonna work on keeping the rest of this day on the happy track. Prayers appreciated!
Posted by Emily S. at 4:43 PM