Saturday, May 24, 2008

the week that would never end

I've been thinking a lot this week about what my life would be like if I weren't a mom. It really is the absolute hardest job anyone could have and yet I wonder sometimes if my expectations are just wrong and if I'm too soft to be a mom. I watch as other schedule and daycare ("school") and seem to have lives beyond parenthood and wonder if my life will ever be "beyond parenthood". I barely have time to organize my house much less my thoughts. I don't have to time to organize my house. I'm still waiting for the organizing fairy to show up which is sort of like the tooth fairy only they leave things in place instead of money under your pillow.

Today I was searching everywhere for our car stroller and couldn't figure out what we had done with it. I was headed to the farmer's market and mentally went through my blur of a week to discover I must have left it in the parking lot of our local science museum when we visited on Thursday. Made a pit stop and what do you know....they had it! The kind man even left the parking booth to run inside and get it for me, seeing that I would have to move a small tribe without a stroller to get it myself. We live in a very honest and kind place. What more could I ask for my children.

So the girls have decided that their favorite game is A)not listening and B) screeching loudly when I am asking them to do something. This week has really been a test to what works and what doesn't, and yelling in response to their loudness does NOT work. Quietly lifting them and taking them to their room is slightly more effective but doesn't keep it from happening again. I know it's a "pushing the boundaries thing" but I'm ready to move on to another annoying habit. This really wears me out. Twice this week I have gone to bed before the girls and I have to thank Will for taking up the slack.

Meanwhile Phoebe is motoring around like a demon and will not be denied anything her sisters are doing. Beatrice has gotten her up on the first step about 3 times that I know of and Viv keeps trying to "walk" her around the house. She walks too quickly and ends up dragging Phoebe between her legs. AND Phoebe fell off the bed this morning looking for me while I had passed out with Beatrice in the middle of the night. (note to self-- put Phoebe back in the crib if leaving the bed to put Beatrice back to bed.)

Beatrice is having some sort of cough that would not stop and I have to constantly battle my own thought as well as the off the cuff comments of Will. (It doesn't help that his mom was in town last week commenting/worrying on every little thing they do. Good and bad.) He usually is very good about supporting my spiritual work and careful not to malpractice but I guess this one is sticking around just a little too long. So I'm faced with the thought that this is not working. My prayers. I have these conversations with my spiritual teacher in my head that really make all my doubts seem so silly and yet the comments are still slipping out. It may be time to actually call my spiritual teacher.

So as I sit and wonder what my life would be like without children... I think about the laughter of the kids as they ride their bikes up and down the street with their friends, and the way they can be so silly and yet so helpful. Viv and Baxter helped me put away the traffic cones after they were finished riding and the "SLOW" men who were bigger than they were. It was too cute. (The men aren't really slow they are holding a slow sign to caution drivers to watch for children. They are blow up figures like the punching dolls I used to have as a kid. So far I have managed to talk the kids out of punching them but I do see a fair amount of close drive-bys with the bike.)

Who else would I have to comb my hair and hang from it alternatively? The girls had quite the gigglefest on friday while I was trying to talk to my mom on the phone doing just this. It would be kind of nice if I could teach them not to pull so much.

My life would not be nearly as interesting and I would know very little about what is important, really. Don't get me wrong, you don't need kids for this but it does make you give yourself up to see outside of "me". And I really think they make me a better person. No one else in the whole world could get me to question the truth and reality more seriously than those three little people. And it also makes me realize just how much my own mother loves me. Which must be tremendous!

Saturday, May 17, 2008


All moms think that they could do a better job, even the ones who seem to have the "angel" children. I am constantly amazed to discover that this is a thing that most of us struggle with, and that there are no easy babies, just easy moments.

It is always a slight nod and pat on the back when things go as planned because they almost never do. Phoebe is crawling on all fours with no effort and pulling herself up with some effort. I am told by developmental "experts" that this crawling thing is important although I have met plenty of well-adjusted (?--not being an "expert") little people whose mom's claim they never crawled. So I smugly stand back and nod, "she crawls". Will who has a song for everything now sings when he sees her, "there's no stopping her now, she's on the move," I also remember that this brings shorter naps, a bigger appetite and severe crankiness when I leave the room.

And as I record this I have two little girls hanging on me because they want to cuddle and apparently haven't found a way to do this without their favorite toy, Mom.

Viv has started to cop attitude with me. She now calls me "mother" (or "mudder", if she is really being cheeky) when she is tired of my requests or conversation. I still have struggles with her about using the potty and hope that this too will end before I know it. She likes to wait until it is too late or almost too late.

B doesn't show much interest in the potty but will tell me when she has poopies. Oddly it is not always in an effort to get the diaper changed.

There is more sibling rivalry these days as B realizes that she can pack a punch too. I am have talks with her almost every other day about hitting or biting. It seems to be just aimed at her two sisters though so I think we can work it out. She is actually very affectionate and will be the first to hug and kiss her friends/sisters/mom. It is tough to be two and the middle of the pack. She gets the short straw so many times but does make the most of it.

Never a moment to myself...I have a baby waking, crying and a two year old screaming, crying in frustration. I guess this session is over.

Thursday, May 8, 2008

slowing down

I'm having one of those days where I just watch my girls in amazement. They are such characters. Vivienne can be such a chatterbox, talking up the neighbors and telling me things she thinks I should know. Beatrice is just plain sassy. No doubt about it, she will swagger down the middle of the street and I can say we'll go this way and she just goes the direction she has settled on. Not that she isn't agreeable, she will be the first to hand over a toy or swing when it is someone else's turn. She just knows what she wants. I hope I can nurture that in her.

Today was the first day that I got to witness her riding her tricycle. Really riding it and not just scooting. We made it half way round the block. I was impressed with her determination. And Vivi was such a great big sis, cheering her and telling her "one foot, then the other, one foot and then the other" I hope V will continue this way.

Will was whistling at dinner. He does this off and on and I never pay too close attention. He is a good whistler though and can accurately whistle a tune. It's a nice soundtrack to the day. Anyway Beatrice listens. And tonight she says "Peter". He was whistling "Peter and the Wolf." I have to say that I'm impressed.

Phoebe is just trying to keep up. Gets kind of cranky because she was to be a part of everything and gets stuck or left behind. She can commando crawl to just about anywhere she sets her sights on. I can't leave her in the middle of the room for safe keeping anymore.

She fell asleep tonight in my lap as I was checking my emails. It was so sweet. I needed to put on her pjs though so she woke up slightly and I had to snuggle her back to sleep. Sometimes I just want to hold on tight and never let her go. It is such a great feeling, the love you can have for this little person. In my case the love I can have for my three. There are days that I wish I could just lay in bed with all of them piled on me snuggling the day away. The capacity to love and be love wrapped up nicely for me to see, to really see.

Sunday, May 4, 2008

on holiday

It's not that I've been on holiday from this blog although it may seem like it. It's just that I have been at the beach and our place had no computer or proximity to one. Strange. I would have liked to write during the holiday then I wouldn't forget all the goofy things that my girls said and did at the beach but now I just have to give my tainted version of it. (not that the fresh memory is any better than the week old one.)

So thanks to "Um B" we went to the beach and got to stay in a rather posh condo there, almost able to forget that we were in Florida where the white trash reigns. The girls were able to jump the waves and build sand castles every morning and splash in the pool and jacuzzi in the afternoon. We got to have a quick trip to St. Augustine to see my aunt and cousins where the girls got to play with a young cousin (a few times removed) in a big hamster gym (minus the wheel) and play on a Harley (not ride one). When asked if she wanted to ride a motorcycle when she was a big girl, Beatrice, to my surprise said "no". I'm sure she will set her eyes on one once she has mastered the bicycle. She is after all a bit of a thrill seeker.

Holiday for parents is not really all that it would seem. Let's face it. It's all about the kids. So sitting on the beach with a good book and a possible snooze is just not going to happen. But it is great with memories of Viv and B running in the water while Phoebe laughs with delight. Bebe getting knocked over by the waves and bouncing right back up like a weeble. Trying to do head stands in the water while getting sand in her hair and picking up every shell that seems remotely interesting.

Vivi learning how to "swim" from my college friend, Auntie Gae who did well getting her to kick and blow bubbles in the water at the same time. Wish I lived closer...

We got to see a turtle digging for a place to nest.

Overall being on holiday does give us a break in a sense. The girls had great appetites and slept well. So there were no fights over finishing meals or going to bed. Makes me think I should live near the beach.

I did learn not to leave the girls in the care of my cousin even if she would seem to be a grown and responsible woman/mother. Apparently much against my brother's warnings she encouraged the girls to run in the water with their nice clothes on causing V to take off her underpants so they would not get wet.... only for her to drop them in a wave. And Bebe, well she needs no real encouragement to throw caution to the wind.

It is a challenge to travel with the girls so young but they are good travelers for the most part and I'm glad that we made the effort for them. They will remember this even it is somewhat spotty --like my recollections are.