Tuesday, January 28, 2014

All About Chance: Milestones

If you read my last post, you know that I'm trying to sleep more. As it turns out, sleep takes time. Who knew? If I sleep, it seems something's gotta give, and since I won't let it be my boys, I guess it's gonna be this space from time to time. Ideas and words and clever (to me, anyway) turns of phrase always dance in my mind and I love to have this outlet for them but finding the time to sit down and type, especially on my laptop with its battery that won't hold a charge, an "a" key that sticks, and a Max who gets a real kick out of closing anything, is really darn hard (nice run-on sentence, Amy). I think I need Dragon, darn it! Or a an assistant. Hmmm...there's a thought.

Ok, excuses made, it's time for my periodic post about...drum roll boy, Chance.


Fast. It's happening in flash. 

First, the roll-over. Then the crawl, straight and fast, and over, under or through everything in sight.

Next, the sit.

Perfect posture.

And finally, the stand. Now is preferred resting position.

Next will be the walk, definitely before summer. Looks like that fenced-in park down the road will be a favorite hang-out in warm weather.

And the best part, Max is gaining a playmate.

Oh, wait. The teeth. Chewing, drooling, whining. Thanks goodness for tiny thumbs.

That's my boy, Chance.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Wednesday Revevlations

I'm not a good mom when I'm tired, especially to Max. Yeah, I know the title says "Wednesday," but it actually hit me last night. Don't know why I never noticed before. Probably because I was, well, tired.

Max was challenging yesterday. Tired too, I think. There was lots of crying, hitting, throwing, going boneless, and once he very purposely pushed Chance (still unsteady on his haunches) over backwards making him cry. I have to admit I felt rather pleased when Max's bottom lip started to quiver. At least he felt bad about it.

As I was struggling with Max to put him to bed I noticed my anger rise. In typical female fashion I've got a laundry list of things I can do better but I see myself as generally patient. This seemingly sudden appearance of a short temper has gotten my attention. Where did that come from? Why am I yelling at a three-year-old? If something should happen to him or to me during the night is this how I want our last moments to be? Wack-a-doo thoughts of an exhausted momma.

The thing is, Max doesn't talk. With the exception of a handful of signs and lots of pointing and grunting he can't tell me what he needs. He can't yell at me. He can't tell me what hurts or why he's sad. He gets frustrated, I get frustrated, I loose my temper and I feel like a bad momma. I must remember to take a step back and take a deep breath and start again.  

Twice today I encountered women who look (to me) like they are handling this motherhood thing better than me and both times I cried about it.

The first was at pick-up while we mommas (and a few daddies and a grammy or two) gathered in the subarctic temperatures waiting for our kiddos to come smiling out the school doors. She arrived in her Pumas and skinny jeans, this momma who is always happy, bubbly and eager to chat with her other momma friends. I've heard her say she has a daughter, and I know her son has special needs. Not sure what they are but he's in Max's substantially separate classroom, so.... What's different about this momma and me? She's not exhausted. In her case it's probably because she doesn't have a paying job sucking the life energy from her bones. I watched her for a minute or two until Max came out. My tears fell onto his belly as I buckled him into his seat.

The second happened only minutes before I began writing this post. Catching up on the blogs I follow, I read the rants of a stay-at-home momma of three in Florida who spent hours trying to learn patterns on her daughter's Rainbow Loom. She actually had the time and energy to do that. I'd be lying if I said I wasn't A LOT jealous.

Priorities, that's what it boils down to. I need to make sleep one of mine. Much easier said than done, especially as a tag-team parent. But Max needs me to be a good momma. He needs me to be patient. He needs me to play with him and teach him. He needs a momma who's happy and energized. Chance needs me too, but right now his most pressing needs are basic. Food, sleep and a clean bum. Max needs a parent, a teacher, a guide, a friend, a playmate.

So, this isn't a resolution. It's not something I'm gonna say I'll do and then give up in three weeks when it gets hard or boring. This needs to be a real change. A change that will benefit my health, my parenting skills, and my relationship with my boys.

Here's to sleep! And before I head off to my bed, a few cute pics.

Sunday, January 5, 2014

End of the Year in Review

I've been hiding and it's been lovely. 12 days free of long commutes, f-bombs in the hallway and senioritis. In their place I've had time for baking, baby snuggles and even an occasional glass of wine.

Speaking of which, hold for one minute...

Much better.

I'm not sure how other working mothers do it, but my boys wear me out. Except for a pretty scrumptious quiche on Christmas Eve, my baking was all post-Santa. In fact, it wasn't until the 26th that the hardcore relaxation even began. And begin it did. On one blissful morning Sean sequestered the kids in the living room and I slept until 11:00 am. I have no memory of the last time I did that. When I finally woke (because my phone rang) my body ached for lack of practice. Can you believe it?

That's enough about me. Now on to Max and Christmas.

Max is signing "binky." He made that sign up.
Even at three years of age Santa's not on the radar and there was no giddy anticipation of Christmas. In the weeks preceding I said "yes" to everyone who asked if Max was excited, but truthfully, I don't think he got it.  Presents, though, he gets. Finally. And I love it! Watching him tear open the paper to reveal the goodies inside, seeing the smiles and the wide eyes--especially when Mickey Mouse peered back at him--nothing better.

It's taken Max a long time to reach each and every milestone and they're met with great praise and excitement, and sometimes relief. But it's the little things, like trying to pry open a box to get at the toy inside, that make me feel like I finally have my little boy (instead of my baby). He has arrived and he's just like everyone else.

And now I miss him! He and Daddy have been in Vermont with Nonnie and Grandpa since New Year's Eve. So it's been me and my boy, Chance. There've been new foods--"sweet" is not a favorite. Learning to climb--mostly under, not over. And bouncing. Lots and lots of bouncing!

*Two days have passed since I started this post--long story. Max came home in the meantime. He looked so big to me. For just a fleeting second I got to see Max as others see him. He was beautiful, as he always is.