Old Age

Saturday was a day where K and I apparently thought we were 22 again.  There was a football game.  There were friends from out of town.  And there was beer.  OMG there was beer.  I don’t know why we thought it would be okay to begin drinking beer at 11 in the morning.  I guess we thought we were at a fraternity tailgate and forgot that we were 40 years old.

The day began with us leaving the kids with a sitter and gleefully waving good-bye, practically running down the street to meet our friends.  Ten minutes later, a beer was handed to us.  Oh, and we ate one bowl of Frosted Mini Wheats for breakfast.  Really filling.

At one point, my friend Kate pronounced it “The greatest day ever.”  We literally lost Kate’s husband and later found him at a post-game tailgate a ten minute walk away.  I found myself drinking a Bud Light.  Horrifying.  Kate and I took a bathroom break in a church.  I attempted, with the help of a friend, to tackle my own husband.  It only resulted in him falling on Kate, potentially injuring her, but the point is, I did it.  I threw a ball for some random German Shephard.  I have no idea who this dog belonged to.

We brilliantly decided to go out to dinner later, at a respectable restaurant in Boulder.  In jeans and University of Colorado t-shirts.  And hats.  And some visors.  Our friend Matt continually asked the waitress to push our two tables together, which would completely block the entire waitstaff’s entry into the kitchen, but no matter.  We probably should have been embarrassed, but we weren’t.   That happens when you drink Bud Light.

When we got home, K announced he wanted to go upstairs and “see the kids”.  Um, no.

Suffice it to say, we went to bed at bed at 8:30.  And in a gorgeous display of Murphy’s Law, Zoe woke up sick the next day.  Great.  I don’t think I need to go into detail about how we felt the next day.  Because we’re 40.  I’m sure people can imagine.

Your basic trip to the ob/gyn

So school starts in exactly 10 days.  Do you think I am counting?  Yes, I’m practically counting the minutes.  Look, I adore my children, but I am with them roughly 13 hours a day–anytime they aren’t sleeping–and I’m mostly with them alone.  They spend the majority of that time fighting over the iPad (even when it’s in “iPad jail” on top of the mantle, which it is, A LOT), yelling, doing the opposite of what I ask, complaining about food in front of them, begging for everything and anything (yesterday Max wanted me to buy him some sort of Ninja weapon called a shurikan and seriously wouldn’t let it go for an hour), sitting on me, holding on to my leg and continuously asking me for water, milk, an apple, a cracker, a wipe of a butt, a pen, some paper, chapstick, candy, a piece of bread, etc etc.  By then end of the day, they could probably be on the front lawn, nude and hitting each other with loaves of French bread in front of 20 neighbors and I’d be all, “eh, that’s okay….no discipline is needed here.”

So since said children are with me 13 hours per day, it stands to reason that they go with me everywhere.  Where to yesterday, you ask?  The friggin gynecologist.   Like I didn’t humiliate myself enough to give birth to these little people?

What was supposed to be a consultation on an IUD, turned out to be a full on insertion of the IUD.  Remember the whole vasectomy debacle from this post?  Yeah, so this is where we ended up on that front.  Because it’s not enough that I spent 9 months baking each child and pushing them out of my vagina–almost dying with one, but okay–apparently now I have to have a foreign object inserted into my uterus for 5 years.

So anyhoo, we arrive and they announce that since we talked about it 5 months ago at my annual appointment, I can have it inserted now.  Cue two children staring up at me with curiosity.  Thankfully, the nurses took Max to the nurses station (where he had them all in hysterics, by the way).  Zoe, however, refused to leave my side, so we strapped her in the stroller next to the table.  So there I am, making casual conversation with my doctor, feet up in stirrups, while Zoe cranes her head as far as it will go to see behind the sheet.  I’m sure if she could talk, she’d be all, “Hey Momma, what the sam hill is goin on behind that blue sheet?”

So I guess that’s just a typical day in the life of a stay at home mom I guess.  Don’t ask me about the scary metal instruments they brought out for the procedure.  We can talk about that another time.

Curiosity

Actual conversation by the town center fountains/playground:

Nude little boy: Hello

Me: hi!

Zoe:    ::silence because the darn child still isn’t talking::

Nude little boy busies himself towelling off

Zoe: ohh ohh ohh!!    :points to boy’s bellybutton::

Me: oh yes, that’s his belly button

Zoe: ohh ohh ohh!!    ::points to his penis::

Nude little boy: hey!   ::turns away::

Me: oh sorry, she’s just curious because she’s a girl and she doesn’t have those parts

Nude little boy:    ::thinks::

Me: you know, because girls and boys have different parts

Nude little boy: hey!  Yeah! Girls have a black triangle thing right here!!     ::points to his privates::

Me:   ::die laughing::

The end.  

 

Spirited Children

This weekend, I attended my first meeting with the “Spirited Children” group here in Denver.  What is a spirited child?  In the past, I have always though “spirited” was just a nice term to describe spoiled brats, with mothers who clearly had no control over their behavior.  Then I became a mother to Max.  Then I became a mother to Zoe.  THEN I read this article.  I completed changed my mind and decided to join the group.

Spirited children are generally just more difficult.  They are more emotional.  They are high energy.  They are stubborn as hell.  They are generally just more child.  This is my life.  Max is sent to his room at least once before he even goes to school.  Every morning is a battle.  No amount of consequences or rewards (for good behavior) has changed that.  If he decides he is going to refuse to do things or be in a bad mood, that’s the way it is.  There is no breaking this child.  I always thought I had it bad.  Until I joined this group.

Obviously the meeting involved large amounts of alcohol, in the form of margaritas.  Then the stories of people’s struggles started and *cue singing angels and violins*, I have found my people.

Max has always been very stubborn and strong-willed.  And it’s becoming more and more obvious that he cannot seem to control his emotions.  The slightest disappointment–a rained out soccer game, a canceled playdate due to illness, the realization that we have run out of peanut butter…..all of these result in complete meltdowns.  He freaked out and stomped around crying two days ago because he spilled a total of three drops of water on his pants.  No amount of talking to him can calm him down.  And the will he has is impossible to match.  The “tie-shoes incident”, as I like to call it, from a month ago is still happening.  Every day I pick him up from school, and I mean every day, he asks me can he have a pair of shoes that tie and when I say no, because he doesn’t know how to tie yet, it results in a screaming fit on the way home.  This is every day for the past month.

But my stories paled in comparison to some of the other ladies of the group.  One lady said that her child screams until she’s faint and turns almost blue.  She has left countless full shopping carts in the store because her daughter has freaked out over the fact that mom didn’t get plain Cheerios.  She has to leave virtually every playgroup and music class that they go to because something sets her off and she simply cannot recover.  She and her husband are not planning to have another child because they can’t face the thought of getting another one like this.

Another lady said she has two highly spirited children and they spend roughly 1/3 of the day screaming at the top of their lungs.  Recently, they drove by a train and her son announced that he wanted to “hug the train.”  When told that this was not possible to do, he screamed for two hours.  They are so difficult, in fact, that her mother, their grandmother,  refuses to babysit or spend any time with them (which I think is beyond evil, but whatev).  Said grandmother spends a lot of time with all her other grandchildren.  That’s how difficult they are.

Where am I going with this?  I guess just to explain how nice it is to find people who understand and don’t judge.  If you ever see a woman in the grocery store with what appears to be a wild spider monkey in her cart, don’t judge.  That woman has probably done everything possible to gain some control, but absolutely has to get some food for her family.  If it looks like she’s not doing anything, it’s probably because she is just flat-out exhausted from dealing with said spider monkey.

How to expertly handle tantrums

Today was epic.   On the plus side, I got to try out some new parenting techniques that K and I learned at our $180 parenting class!  Yay.

I’m two glasses in, so excuse any spelling errors.  Meaning two glasses of wine.  Yep, I’m that mom.  The bottle was opened at 4:59.  The first sip at 5:00 and from then on it didn’t matter that Zoe threw her plate across the room or that Max somehow ended up with his pants off again.  I really need to learn to buy the Target wine box (or the “T-box”, as they call it), discussed often at Rants From Mommyland.  But I digress.  

Anyway, the day began with a diaper situation that almost had me calling the Center for Disease control because that simply can’t be normal for a 24 lb child.  Then I got her back to sleep for a few minutes and Max came in, acting like a character from Night of the Living Dead….”I’m hungry…hungry…brains, brains!!”  When the day begins with shit and screaming, it’s not good.  I am not a morning gal.

It was Wacky Wednesday in Max’s class and we decided he was going to wear a t-shirt, a tie, swimming goggles and two different shoes.  He was totally into it.  Until we were three feet from his classroom.  Suddenly he didn’t want to dress wacky.  He wanted matching shoes.  He was shy.  He was embarrassed.  He didn’t like Wacky Wednesday.  He wanted to drive home and get his matching shoes.  Um, no.  Thank God for Mr. Jason, one of the teachers, for wearing a rainbow colored afro-like wig.  Because if it hadn’t been for him, Max would have been coming home with me and then the wine might have been cracked open at noon.

Crisis averted, I walked downstairs to the lobby of the preschool and calmly walked out…..yep I’ve got this under control.  I am a competent, calm, mother of two.  Zoe and I walked across the street, holding hands, where upon she decided, in the middle of the street with a truck approaching, that she didn’t want to hold hands.  I took her hand back and calmly told her that street = hand hold.  Nope.  A collapse to the concrete, truck be damned and commence shrieking.

A fellow room mom was in front of me and she laughed and said “How old is Zoe again?”  I told her two and one month and was met with “Oh yeah, the terrible twos!”  This comment, two days after a person that works at the school remarked “Haha!  Terrible twos huh?” when Zoe was throwing a tantrum in the actual school.  Laugh it up people.  Laugh it up.

After a harrowing ride home, whereupon Zoe shrieked and pointed at various things, trying to communicate God knows what, the next couple hours progressed relatively painlessly.  In fact, she even went down for a nap after only 20 minutes of back rubbing and singing, rather than the usual 40 minutes of incessant cuddling, back rubbing, singing and various other tricks to force a 2 year old to calm herself.  She woke up after only 45 minutes, per usual, but the point is it only took 20 minutes to get her to go to sleep.

Wednesday is a busy day for us because both kids have swimming right after pre-school ends and then Max has soccer practice so I (usually) wake Zoe from her nap, race to the preschool with Zoe still in jammies, get Max, race home to change Zoe and grab the swim bag, race to swimming, race home and get the kids an early dinner and then troop off to soccer practice.  Max apparently had other plans for the day.  Every time I have picked him up from school for the last two weeks, he has greeted me with telling me the latest thing that he “wants”.  Today it was sneakers with laces.  Forget the fact that he doesn’t know how to tie laces, he wanted these right now, today.  I, of course, said hells no because guess who will be the one tying them every three seconds?

What followed can only be described as a category 5 tantrum.  And of course it happened in the middle of the lobby of the preschool.  These people must think my children are insane.  All the way to the car, he’s screaming that I’m a bad mommy.  After 5 minutes of it, I whipped out a “consequence with empathy” (Thank you Love and Logic parenting class!)  “Oh dude, this is so sad but since you’re screaming at me, you’re going to lose the TV and the iPad for the rest of the day.”  More shrieking ensues about the thought of no cartoons.  No lesson learned whatsoever.  Hysteria for ten more minutes.  “Oh, Max I’m so sorry, but you’re going to have to skip soccer practice today now also”.  Nope, nothing but screams.  Straight to his room when we got home, which resulted in kicking the door, throwing books and pillows, etc, etc.  He finally calmed down about 45 minutes after the whole thing started and his face was blotchy for the rest of the day.  All this over shoes with laces.  Seriously?  I think I’m doing something wrong.

Parenting with a sense of humor

I have a pretty good compilation of embarrassing parenting moments.  I have more stories than I can count, but we can save those for another day.  I give you this:

*When DS was younger, he liked to pick his nose.  One day I took him to the mall in his little buggy (the red one with the blue handle).  As I was shopping, he kept saying, “mommy, mommy”, but I didnt really pay much attention.  Well I guess he had picked his nose and had a big ol’ booger at the end of his little index finger and was trying to get my attention to show it to me.  Another lady saw this and started laughing.  I just got a wipe and cleaned it off of his finger, but I felt so embarrased.  God only knows how long he was flashing his booger for. 

*I’ve nicknamed one of my 3 year olds Gossip Girl. Every time I pick her up from preschool, she feels the need to report who got in trouble, who got a time out, who didnt listen. And this is in front of all the parents. I try to quickly change the subject, but its always immediately “Justin didnt listen today. John got yelled at” And I’m sure shes so innocent.

*In line at the supermarket, DS noticed the very large woman behind us was buying those YoCrunch yogurts with the candy and cookie stir ins.  He told her, “that’s not very healthy food!”  I guess I should be glad that he knows!

*My husband always makes sure it be known when asked in the morning from Jadyn “where are you going Daddy” …as he is off to work…..with his reply ” I am going to work to make the money”………Last week someone asked Jadyn what does your Daddy do for his job?…..Her reply ” He “makes” money!

*When DD1 was just under 3, we were at French class doing the opening song. Each child would take a turn while we all sat in a circle, singing, in French, “Hello (name) how are you?”.  When it was DD’s turn, she sat quietly for a second. Then she turned around, looked at me and grabbed my boobs. As if that wasn’t enough, she shouted out “Mommy’s boobies! Mommy’s boobies!” laughing hysterically, and squeezing my boobs w/ both hands with everyone looking on.

*My husband, as well as many others his age, are in love with Star Wars. And slowly your children get introduced to the characters…not by watching the movies themselves, but seeing items my husband owns, commercials, and happy meal toys. Well, my three year old decided it is pronounced as “Star Whores”. Now I see the error in my ways thinking this is hysterical and I didn’t want to correct her and take away our amusement. And it never was an issue….until Halloween. Because we had just started school last fall, we were slowly being introduced to the children in our subdivision and getting to know the parents. One family dressed all five of themselves as Star Wars characters….do you see where we’re going now? In the middle of trick or treating…”MOMMY, MOMMY…LOOKS IT’S STAR WHORES”. Thank goodness it was dark, because I felt my face get hot and time was frozen as I swear hundreds of families just stop and stare in the middle of the street. I felt like I was naked. So I quickly corrected her and laughed trying to not sound bothered by the whole scene. Then I hear a heckler in the crowd…”No honey….that’s a completely different movie” Laughter errupted as we quickly fled the scene.

*Erin lets everyone know that boys have a penis and girls have a vagina. She will just randomly announce it. Then goes on to clarify that Sean has a penis and she has a vagina. And that I have a vagina. Then will say “girls have a vagaina. Boys have penis. Girls have vagina. What comes next mommy?? BOYS HAVE PENIS!!” While happy that she has the whole anatomically correct thing figured out, it gets a bit old having my 3 year old announce to the cashier at King Soopers her knowledge of the vagina and the penis. I suppose it’s better than the story my mom tells about my brother when he was 2. We lived in a VERY caucasian little farming town in Michigan and they were visiting my grandparents in Detroit and my brother saw some African Americans and loudly asked my mother about the chocolate people. How fun for her.

*David’s new favorite thing to do is wipe his snot on my shirt. Ever since he’s had his most recent cold, I have had to change my shirt 2 to 3 times a day. I don’t have a lot of maternity clothes, so it has made for some lovely belly shirts.

On another note, some douchbag dad asked me today if I was having twins. I laughed (to avoid the tears) and told him no. He then said “I bet I’m not the first guy to ask you that.” OH REALLY! What a jerk.

I concur with that–what a jerk.  In my opinion you aren’t even allowed to ask a woman if she’s pregnant unless you actually see a baby emerging from her vagina.

Give me a few more days to write of my 7 days with the kiddos alone.  I’m still recovering!