Momma, take a breather tonight...
Updated: Feb 24, 2022
one of those days....one of those days where the day starts with gumption, smiles, and a good breakfast. Your little girl wants to get herself dressed and when you offer to help her with her cardigan you hear, "I can do it!" I watch as she's holding the button and hole with her tiny fingers, determined as ever to reach her goal today. All of a sudden she looks up with a huge grin and I can't help but shout, "I AM SO PROUD OF YOU!!! THAT'S A MILESTONE RIGHT THERE!" Being an educator, I can't help but get excited because I know how hard buttons can be for little fingers and those fine motor skills are just so important. We do jumps and dance moves as we start to head towards the door.
Fast forward to school pick up: kicking shoes as hard as she can so they hit baby brother (almost 1) in the face, lunch bag and water bottle sloshed to the side, and rolling around on the floor as we attempt to leave the campus. At a Montessori school you wear indoor shoes and outdoor shoes, so it's always a process to get ready to depart. As we head to the car, she darts out in the parking lot ahead of me, thankfully no cars. We get home and the meltdowns start even before we can leave the car. "I want to go to her (a friends) house NOW!! YOU'RE GOING TO TAKE ME THERE NOW!" Gotta love the tone, especially the commands with the word "NOW" attached to each request. We talk about her words and how her commands are not going to work like that. I give her a warning based on her school behavior and tone that if this continues, we may lose our tv time this afternoon. I can see we are a bit loopy (usually means we got up before our alarm clock changed color) so I go over the routine with her before we get in. After changing and bathroom necessities are finished, it's time for some free-play before quiet time (she rarely naps.) All of a sudden I hear a "UGH!!!! PUT THIS BRIDAL ON HER NOW....DO IT!" Nope! I am not hearing this again so I suggest we move into quiet time at that immediate moment. She's definitely tired and I am not going to stand for this. I review with her how she was warned in the car what would happen if we use that voice, and she knew it meant no "movie time" today.
We get into her room, read a story, and quick lights dimmed so the little miss can have a sense of calm. I take baby brother in the backyard so that his squeals won't distract her and perhaps, just maybe....she will fall asleep. Well, after about an hour I can see that's not happening. Not a biggie, we will just do bed early. Ok, but brother needs to go down for nap next....he had a late morning nap. How am I going to keep her calm while I do this? I ask her to read one more story so that I may tuck him in.
I decide her and I will go outside to do some yard work as I know she's going to be a bit loud if I bring her in and I thought she'd enjoy having some responsibility helping. We begin taking old tomato plants out and sweeping, but then I can hear baby brother isn't going down. I ask her to come in with me as I rock him a bit more. She begins squealing as loud as she can, banging on his baby toys in the play room, knowing what I am doing. It wakes him up as he's finally ready to go down so I bolt out into the living room area and let her know she's now lost her favorite horse toys. By this point baby brother is fed up and crying. Even a pacifier isn't cutting it. He decides to start throwing it nonstop on the floor and is just not having it. I attempt to let him cry it out a bit, but no, not happening today.
As the two of them play, she begins to get a bit rowdy: pushing him aside, hands around his neck, and just overall being way too rough. I let her know she's lost a story for bedtime. I hate taking away story time, but at the end of the night it's really all we have. When I go into the kitchen and come back out with dirty dishes, I hear her again roughhousing with him. She lets me know she pushed him. Now she's lost both stories.
It's all I can do to not eat their leftover macaroni pasta, pull out a carton of ice cream, or pour a glass of wine when I am feeling defeated. In the past, that's exactly what I would do to cope with a tough day like this. We haven't had one this hard in a long time. Not exactly sure what's going on....is it behavior she sees at school, full moon tonight, or lack of sleep? I am guessing a combination. Then when little brother is screaming too and throwing every pacifier in his crib out the sides of his bed, I feel like everyone is in their own way saying "screw you, Mom!"
So what stopped me tonight from giving into temptation? Well, for one it's because I am on day 23 of Whole30 and I've made it this far....why quit now? Also, I've worked damn hard to work on some habits that have kept me from meeting my goals...I don't want to feel controlled by food or my emotions, I want to be able to reflect and work through them. How can I sift through the hard stuff if I am not willing to come face to face with it? When I just dive into a distraction, that temporarily makes me feel good in the moment, but I am not truly going to feel at ease that way.
Mommas, many times you just need to hear from someone "you did the right thing" or "you're doing a damn good job with those kids!" Sometimes, for whatever reason, you don't have that voice around you when you need it most. So I am here to tell you "YOU ARE DOING THE BEST YOU CAN WITH THOSE LITTLES AND THEY ARE SO LUCKY TO HAVE THE MOM THEY HAVE!" We have to be understanding with ourselves and know there are going to be some tough hills and mountains to climb. I am saving the word "mountains" for when my girl hits the real teenage years. (I am a bit scared for that!) When those days hit, we need support so that we don't take it out on ourselves or try to cope with things that are only going to make us feel worse later.
So don't be afraid to reach out to your closest girlfriends, family, or us at Wild Heart Mommas because that's what we are here for. That's what a Momma tribe is all about!