Up until a few months ago I would have said that this being a Mama thing is a breeze. It’s hard work of course, but it’s so joy filled and fun that the hardness doesn’t feel so hard.
But then, something shifted.
I know it’s just a phase, a test probably.
But friends, it’s been tough.
My sweet little innocent, consistently happy, hilarious and beautiful girl is in a new phase.
A hard phase.
Of course, I blame sleep.
Or the lack of sleep rather.
You see, a few months ago we moved her to a toddler bed. We made a big deal about it. We painted her room, new bedding, a whole lotta new stuff. Her big girl room.
What we didn’t know is that big girl room would equal a lot less sleep.
She went from sleeping from 8:00pm-8:00pm every single night with a 2 hour nap every day, to sleeping from 7:30pm-6:00am each night with a 1.5 hour nap each day.
Granted, I know that it doesn’t seem like a lot of difference, but friends, in the heat of the crazy that overtakes my child, that 2.5 hours means everything.
Her crazy comes when she first wakes up and wanders down the stairs (she learned how to open the door 2.5 seconds after being in her big girl bed) and she demands, needs, believes it’s necessary to her survival to watch a show.
And good mommies would probably be fine with this, but I just really hate beginning our day with TV. But alas, when I’m bleary eyed and exhausted sometimes I give in and well, sometimes I don’t. If I don’t, the crazy comes.
The crazy rears it’s head in tears mainly. And whining. Never underestimate the power of the whine.
And honest to goodness it just drives me nuts.
Then, the crazy reappears right before and after naptime.
It’s these three times of day that my beautiful child becomes a demanding, crazy, crying, whining mess.
And somedays I’m full of love and patience and kindness and I sweetly discipline her with the “Happy Heart” Chair or Time Out. And then there are other days that I’m exhausted and annoyed and DONE with the crazy and don’t think I can take one more minute (there are most of the latter than the former).
Then, after lotsa tears and sobs and falling on the floor in utter dismay my beautiful girl reappears and is ready to play.
It’s the strangest thing.
Meanwhile, Brother is seriously the happiest baby that has ever lived and is still winning the gold medal in the best sleeping baby of all time category. However, he is still a baby and is sensitive to his sisters mood swings and the “NO BABY! DON’T YOU TOUCH MY STUFF!” nonsense, which sends him into a complete tailspin filled with crying, sobbing and throwing himself on the floor.
There is something about 2 toddlers screaming their heads off that makes me a little nuts. Sure, somedays I can laugh about the chaos of having children 18 months apart, and others, I want to cry along with them. And sometimes, I do.
Pregnancy really isn’t helping this scenario either. My patience is not what it once was and my lower back has been really bothering me, which again, doesn’t help in dealing with “the crazy.”
I was talking about this with a friend yesterday who is going through the exact same thing and is also weary and exhausted. It was so wonderful to hear that I’m not alone. That all of us Mama’s are fighting the good fight in our yoga pants uniforms and trying to enjoy every moment even when they are filled with crazy.
My fear is that I’ll let the crazy ruin our days. That I’ll allow this phase to make me more negative than positive and to allow Bitzy’s mood to determine mine.
Last night I was so upset about all this and Zach gave me the most encouraging words that may encourage you as well. He said, “You have the privilege of being with your babies all day, everyday. You have the gift of discipling them when they need it. You have the ability to mold their minds and attitudes to be more Christ-like. If it takes a month of 10 time-outs a day to get over this crazy then so be it. She’s only going to shake this with your consistency and help. Stay strong and consistent. Don’t let her crazy make you crazy. This is a gift!”
And in my sane moments I know he’s right. And I would rather be home with these little ones than anywhere else in the world, really I would. And I know in my heart that they need their Mama to discipline and direct their steps during the day help make the right choices.
But friends, it’s hard. And I’m here to admit it.
And then, when the crazy bids goodbye my absolute joy of a daughter will crawl into my lap, plant a kiss on my lip and proclaim that “YOU ARE THE SWEETEST MAMA IN ALL THE LAND. I LOVE YOU THE MOST OF ANYTHING AND EVERYTHING. WILL YOU BE MY SWEETIE PIE MAMA? PLEASE?”
And then, this Mama stuff just doesn’t seem so hard at all.