I'm officially a mom. I say that because I feel like my previous few years of being a mom primarily served to prepare me for my current reality of being mom to a 3-year-old, 15-month-old, and 3-week-old. In the last hour, my morning activities included the following:
In the meantime, it's 11 am and I'm lucky to be semi-dressed with a single cup of coffee and a half of a yogurt inside me as my "breakfast".
A post about the antics of "Threenagers" made me laugh yesterday, since I can definitely relate. Just this morning we had several incidents from my very smart but very dramatic threenager. She melted down in tears and several wailing sessions within 1 hour over the following incidents:
1. She received peach yogurt instead of blueberry.
2. She spilled yogurt on her PJ's.
3. Her sister was too far away to eat the spoonful of yogurt she offered.
4. She was reprimanded for scattering random things all over the floor of my closet.
5. She couldn't sing the alphabet song by herself.
6. I prompted her with the letter names she couldn't remember.
7. Her sister held one of her alphabet flash cards.
8. She dropped some flash cards on the floor.
9. Her dad printed off the wrong coloring pages.
10. She crumpled up her coloring pages.
11. She didn't want to be quiet on time-out.
12. She didn't want her sister to take a nap.
13. I told her she couldn't throw her spoon at her sister.
14. I had to change the baby's diaper.
15. She had a runny nose.
16. She didn't want to wipe her nose.
Add all this (in varying degrees, depending on the morning) that to the regular siren call of "Daddy, wipe mee!" in the middle of the night. Or "Mommy help me get dressed!" Even though she changes her clothes by herself 6 times a day and we finally put locks on her closet doors to help reduce the resulting laundry.
As crazy as things are right now, I sometimes reflect on how it would feel to have a clean house with no kids and I get a tight feeling in my heart. I wouldn't change the stage we are in (and I want to savor every moment) even if the next few years are going to be chaotic and come with piles of laundry. I recently watched some episodes of Fixer Upper for the first time, featuring beautifully remodeled homes for families. But with each home unveiling complete with beautiful decor, I couldn't help but think, "Where are the kids? Where will the life be in this house?" I'm sure that happens behind the scenes since most of the families featured in the show have kids, but it's sure to be not as pretty as the staged home photos.
Do you have young kids? Enjoy every moment. My newborn is already 3 weeks old. My first baby is already 3 years old. And in just a few years they won't "need" me anymore. My daughter's passion in her loud moments is matched by her sensitivity in her quiet moments. She regularly tells me "She loves me so much" and tells her little sister "She will always take care of her."
I'm trying to prioritize every opportunity to connect with my kids; whether coloring with my preschooler, holding my toddler when she reaches for me, or taking the extra 4+ hours a day to nurse my baby. I'm also trying to intentionally address each moment of disobedience and child levity, because the efforts I put in now will impact who my kids grow up to be. Overall, I feel very blessed to be a mom.