Parenting is like an unpredictable weather forecast. Today was a torrential rainstorm, bordering on hurricane-like conditions, with one or two rays of sunshine. My little one, 17 months old, pooped and peed on the potty for the fifth day in a row. Awesome! My three year old was like a fucking typhoon.
I fear that, in this space, I’m not always shining the most positive light on my children. They are my joys, my everything; I love them more than life itself. But, like me, they’re not perfect (and ps. I wouldn’t wish that for them anyway). I don’t find diamonds in their diapers. I feel like if I’m only gushing left and right about how amazing they are… a) who’s going to want to read that? and b) it’s not keeping it real. If you have a friend who tells you that their kid sleeps through the night at 6 weeks old, is never fussy, doesn’t misbehave, and eats broccoli… I hate to break it to you (no, I don’t), but your friend is a fucking liar. Get a new friend, immediately.
We’ve been through the ringer here today. It was a Battle Royale and it began first thing this morning. I should have known how the day would end up. Wowza! I swear three year old girls are just like teenage girls who have their period 24/7. The mood swings, the attitude, the necessity to eat only crap food and the subsequent meltdown when they are told they cannot do whatever it is they so desperately want to do (if only they knew what that was and how to articulate it). In my limited experience with three year old boys, I’m convinced there’s a parallel there to teenage boys who have not yet had sex. The testosterone fueled rage, the erratic behavior, the hyperactivity; it’s all the same. It is so exhausting and after today, I’m just spent.
I shamefully admit to my Mom today that I was really looking forward to my next surgery. Not for the new rack (although that’s obviously a major part of it), but for the guilt-free rest. The time to just relax and not have to actively parent all day, everyday. Is that horrible? My mom assured me it was not. In fact, she told me she used to be friends with a woman who had seven children. This lady told her that she kept having kids because those few days at the hospital after the birth of the latest baby was like a vacation. While I personally think that’s a pretty dumbass plan, I totally understand where she was coming from.
It’s a privilege to be my girls’ mother. They are wonderful in so many ways. Today’s behavior wasn’t great, but I know that three is a trying time for both of us. I saw this quote the other day that so perfectly summed it up. I have to keep reminding myself: “If you want the rainbow, you’ve got to put up with the rain.”