The biggest trial I've had would be my inability to have children "unassisted." I'm talking about doctors assisting me here... not Gty. It took a few years after being married to discover why, after going off the pill after 8 months of marriage, I was still unpreggers. In those childless years I had a lot of sad moments. I hope we made the most of them but I cried a lot more than I probably should have. On the up side, I was able to work full time while Gty was going through grad school and we incurred very little debt (comparatively speaking).
Cut to this week where my trial has been this kid (yes, one of the very kids I used to cry about not having!).
This week has been a lot of this kind of stuff.... except imagine me with a much meaner face, whispering/yelling threats and punishments he is going to receive when we get home and maybe even me pinching his arm. Hard.
He's on my list.
It started out with him refusing to listen, continued with him punching his brother and relentlessly teasing his sister, and peaked last night when he over flowed the toilet by using an insane amount of toilet paper. He had tried to "fix" the problem by flushing again.... and again.... and again. After surveying the scene I could see he had tried to fish out some of the TP and put it into the nearby garbage can. Disgusting. I was already so done with him at this point so it was very ungood. I admit it was not my best parenting moment.
Now, this morning, after a good night's sleep, some exercise and TBone having been at school for the past few hours I am thinking clearer. I can now imagine him in the bathroom in a complete panic as he sees the toilet filling up more and more and more. He tries all his best problem solving skills to no avail and finally comes to tell me only to see me explode. It's not his fault I have no patience and wasn't in the mood to deal with poo water all over my floor.
So here's the thing.... I've been thinking a lot this past week about how really, I'm in the "sweet spot" as far as parenting goes. I have no babies (who Flem reminds me every day are a LOT of WORK) and I have no teenagers to worry about.
- My kids like hanging out with me.
- They love doing family activities.
- They long for my attention.
- They confide in me.
- They still think Gty and I are fairly funny/cool people.
- I control their schedules.
- They can be easily influenced by chore chart points and promises of ice cream as motivation.
- They still love getting hugs and kisses from their mom.
I'm not dumb enough to think that this will last forever. I realize that my time in this "sweet spot" is limited. In a few short years JBird will become a teenager, TBone will soon follow and then.... ::breathing deep:: Beebs. They might be fun years too, but they also might not be. Time will tell.
What I know right now is that THESE are definitely fun years. There are moments of frustration and worry but over all my kids are cute, loving, adorable and funny.
What I need to do right now is decide to enjoy them. Rubber-gloves-required clean-ups or not.
Easier said than done. I know.