And sorry it's been so long since I posted. My new gig is keeping me hopping, and most things I would typically sound off on over here I have been saving for Strollerderby.
And quite frankly, things have been less than great over here. Parenting two kids is kicking my ass. Hard. Will has been teething, poor little guy, so he is cranky and gritchy and not too into the whole "sleep" thing. One night a few weeks ago, I flopped down onto the couch, exhausted, next to Paul and said "Remember that baby we had? The one that would go down easily, even the mythical "drowsy but awake"? The one that would sleep seven or eight hours at a stretch? I want THAT baby back."
Which would be doable, except Maggie is going through A Phase right now, at least I hope it's a phase, that has me seriously considering walking the hell out of here and never coming back on especially bad days. She's just awful, quite frankly. She screams at me, she's kicked us, and she openly defies what she's been told to do and not do. Like looks right at us and does it with what can only be described as a "screw you" look on her little face.
Which makes me feel like the most incompetent, stupid, ineffectual mother on the planet. Nobody else seems to get this kind of behavior out of their kid, at least no one who, you know, actually parents them versus letting them run wild. The people I know have lovely children. I feel like people are either watching her behave like a maniac and thinking "Who is that child's mother??" or hearing me say "Maggie, stop touching that! Margaret, come back here! Mar. Gar.Et. Put. That. Down" while she capers around like a mountain goat on crack and think I am Hell Bitch.
Here's an example: We went to a wedding this weekend, one of my cousins. I love my mom's side of the family, I have a bajillion cousins and some of the awesomest aunts and uncles on the planet. We decided to spend the money and time and go, thinking it would be so much fun to watch Maggie dance with her cousins and carry on.
But disaster on top of disaster (we couldn't get her to nap, and dinner took forever to be served, and I made her stop running around and fondling the ice sculpture), and sure enough, Melt. Down. Our fun family night was over by 9 pm. On the way home the next day, when she'd finally fallen asleep, I asked Paul if he thought she might be, you know, "diagnosable." Or is her issue just that she's three and a half coupled with a very strong will?
Monday night, she fought going to bed tooth and nail and showed up in our room (for the first time) twice to tell us she couldn't sleep. She's been getting up before 7 every morning, and with Will still up at least twice a night and me usually working until 10:30-11ish that REALLY blows. She finally copped to having nightmares last night, and with lots of cuddling and encouragement, got herself to sleep and stayed there.
The worst part is, his behavior makes me not want to be around my daughter. My daughter, who is beautiful and charming and delightful and one of my favorite people, who is growing up so fast I feel like she'll be in college in about a week. And I am not enjoying Will and his utter deliciousness (seriously, were I to post a picture right now you'd be threatening to eat him with a spoon with the chubby thighs and the enormous cheeks and the sweet smile) as much as I should because I am just so damn exhausted all the time.
It just feels like other people can handle all this, too. Other people keep up with their blogs and hold down jobs and work out and keep their houses clean and their friendships maintained, while I've had friends admit to having their feelings hurt because I am so out of touch, and our house looks like it's abandoned practically because of the state of the yard, and let's not discuss the last time my entire upstairs bathroom was clean, and I am always a load behind on the laundry and owe one client a story and my cellphone is broken and I have no idea when I'll be able to burn the time again to fix it.
And yet I am so blessed by these beautiful children I can't stand it. And I know, just as there as a day when Maggie was maybe ten months old when I realized I had hit my groove, there will be one with us as a family of four. And I will sleep, and I will be productive workwise, and have time to talk to my husband and remember why we got ourselves into this situation in the first place, and running away to Costa Rica will no longer seem so appealing.
I'm enormously grateful to have these two children, and even with the teething and behavior issues I would still pick these two delightful kids over any others in the world. But damn. I am tired.