Getting Out of The House

As I mentioned in my last post, the process of going anywhere with children takes years, and in turn, makes me and my family late pretty much all the time. Most days, I choose to stay at home purely because this process is so intimidating. It is such a hassle to get myself ready, get two kids ready, and out the door. You would think it would be easy since they are so small…no. It’s quite the opposite actually. My two year old daughter is potty trained, which is great, but now we have to make sure she has gone to the bathroom right before we leave because I’m not prepared for what would happen if she had to go while I was driving. Do I stop on the side of the road? How long do I have? Do we have time to pull off, park, get the baby out, run in with a baby on one hip and toddler on the other? So many ways this could go downhill.

Anyway, before leaving the house, the toddler has to go potty, will ask for a snack, and then will inevitably take off and lose the shoes that we put on her. Once she is situated, we’re normally good to go. The baby isn’t mobile yet so I don’t have to worry about her losing shoes or hiding from me, thank goodness. I do, however, have to make sure she is fed and has her pacifier. Those are bothย very important. I’ve ended up in Target without insuring both of those and it was AWFUL. Luckily, Target is full of moms who totally get it, so I just got looks that said “I feel you, girl. It sucks.” and not “Ew, look at that mom with the screaming baby, get her out of here.”ย Since my youngest is EBF(exclusively breast fed), she still eats every 3 hours and sometimes 2.5 so I need to feed her right before we go and then I have 2.5-3 hours before I need to feed her again. So I have to ask myself how long our outing will take and will I be in a location that is easy to feed her.

As you could probably tell, I really get worked up over this whole process and unless I have to, I usually just stay at home with the girls. However, I made it a summer goal to get out more with them and do things instead of staying inside all day, every day. This week we worked toward that goal and got out of the house once each day! It was great to catch up with friends and play somewhere other than our living room. It really made the week fly, doing something every morning and getting home just in time for nap and then playing the rest of the afternoon. I realized that I still really dislike getting them ready to go and I don’t think that will change any time soon, but that it is worth it to see my oldest daughter excited about our adventures. I’m going to try my best to get out of the house more, even though it’s tough, and just tell myself “You’ll make it, mama!” because I will and in the end, we’ll all be better for it.

Advertisements

7 Things I’ve Had to Say ‘Goodbye’ to Since Having Children.

I love being a mom. I love my daughters and I love that I am able to stay at home with them every day. I am blessed beyond measure, but there are things that I sometimes miss that you just have to say ‘goodbye’ to once you have children. Especially multiple, and especially if they are 2 and under. Those things are as follows, and in no particular order.

  1. Being on time, anywhere. Before having children, I wasn’t theย most punctual person, but I was normally on time or maybe a few minutes early. Occasionally I would run in looking like the Mad Hatter, but I was there! Now, I’m more like the White Rabbit. “I’m late, I’m late, for a very important date!” For instance, this morning we had plans to be somewhere at 9:30. It is 22 minutes away. So at 9:00 I get up and gather everything and put it on the table. I get the baby changed and dressed, get the toddler dressed and have her go use the potty, get our snacks and drinks ready(you HAVE to have snacks. at ALL times), pack more diapers and change of clothes for both, and I think we’re ready. HA. The shoes that were just on the toddler are now off the toddler and she has to go pee again. I hear an explosion coming from the baby that’s already buckled in the carseat. The books I asked to be cleaned up areย everywhere and I hate to come home to a messy house. So I’m yelling and I’m flustered and my dog is trailing behind me because she hates when I yell. Needless to say, we were very, very, very late. We arrived at almost 10:00. -insert face-palm emoji- Adios, punctuality!
  2. Getting an un-interrupted 9 hours of sleep.ย I have always been a great sleeper. My own mother told me that when I was a baby, I started sleeping through the night at 7 weeks and then I would sleep in until mid-morning. She gave me hope when she said that! But then I had my daughter. She didn’t sleep through the night until 8 months when we started the CIO method, and sometimes she still wakes up in the middle of the night, and always is up before 7 AM. I had convinced myself that we had the difficult child first and the second would be easier. I was wrong. My 5 month old daughter is still in our bed and literally wakes me every 2 hours to eat. I also sleep so lightly now and I hear every little thing, which I’m sure is a biological thing since I’m a mother, but it is super annoying. I’m now a high maintenance sleeper that has to have a fan and a white noise machine or else I can’t sleep at all. Adios, sleep!
  3. My high-school body.ย This one may be a given, but I thought there was a chance of seeing it again if I tried really hard and ate healthy. Nah. It’s not possible. I’ve birthed and breasted two babies… Things have gone South for the Winter, Spring, Summer, and Fall. Adios, bubble butt and perky boobs!
  4. Using the bathroom alone. I say ‘using the bathroom’ because it does not matter what you’re doing in said bathroom, you will have an audience. When I shower at night, the baby sits in her bouncy seat right outside the door so she can see me, or else she wails like a siren. During the day, any pee or poo activity will be monitored closely and cheered on if needed. I do appreciate the high-five, but some things are just best without an audience. Adios, privacy!
  5. Silence.ย I think I’m happy about this one, but it’s definitely something I’ve had to say ‘goodbye’ to. There is no such thing anymore. Maybe when I just had one, but definitely not now. We wake up at promptly 6:30 every morning and my toddler is “turnt”. She then wakes up her sister with a “HHIIIIIIII SISTER! GOOD MORNING!” And yes, it’s a yell. Every. Morning. And one of them is always awake. They alternate naps. There’s squealing, laughing, talking, yelling, crying, whining, stomping, and singing, but no silence. Ever. Adios, peace and quiet!
  6. Cooking elaborate meals.ย I used to love cooking. I loved trying new recipes and the fancier, the better! However, fancy also means time and patience- both of which I no longer have. I also loved to bake. I would do just about anything for a piece of homemade hummingbird cake right now. Drool. I still love to bake, but the kind of baking I am now able to do involves pre-made cookie dough squares that you pop onto a baking sheet and voila. I also still love to cook, neither love went away necessarily, but it’s now more of a rushed, just cook to feed us kind of thing. Protein, carb, veggie. Protein, carb, veggie. Protein, carb, veggie. Adios, smoked salmon eggs Benedict!
  7. Going wherever I want, whenever I want.ย Back to #1 in which I explained why I was late this morning, going somewhere entails A LOT. So the days of merely hopping in the car and going don’t exist. It takes lots of planning and lining up someone to watch the kids. Adios, Hobby Lobby!

All in all, I feel like 7 is not too bad. It’s still a pretty low number, and I’ve been able to say ‘hello’ to a lot of things as well. That’ll have to be another post, I know y’all are tired of reading. To be honest, I don’t really miss all of the things on this list. Because to miss them would mean I want them back and I love my life. I don’t want anything to change. I mean maybe sleep would be nice….. But maybe I didn’t say ‘goodbye’ to that forever. Just for now. If you’re in the same boat, just know that you’ll make it Mama! We’re in this together! If you’re not in the same boat, don’t let this scare you from having kids. It’s a blast!!

Reflections

I don’t know if it’s just me, or if all parents do it, but every night after putting my daughter to bed, I find myself looking at pictures I’ve taken during the day and laughing at all the funny things she said or did. It seems like while I’m in the moment, I’m tired, worn-out, and waiting for my husband to get home from work to help me. I realize that I criticize myself and how I acted earlier with her. I hope that she doesn’t remember the eye-roll that I gave her, or how I snapped at her when she asked for a snack for the forty-third time.
I take notice of how she treats her dolls and if that is any correlation, I think I’m doing a pretty good job. She talks sweetly to them, reads to them, feeds them, and puts them down for naps. She holds and rocks them alone in her rocking chair when she thinks no one is watching. It makes my heart melt seeing her love on her babies like I love on her. Even though I can see myself in her loving actions with her dolls, I pray that she doesn’t also notice my poor actions and words when I’m frustrated with her for not eating her lunch and then asking for a snack as soon as she gets down. You can probably tell I am still a little salty about that.
Tonight is no different from every other night. I sit here in my spot on the porch typing away and thinking about how I let the whole day slip away because I was tired and cranky and now I can’t get it back. People always say time flies. I found that to be true when Aubrey started turning over, crawling, standing, walking, RUNNING, when she turned 1, when she started talking, and when she turned 2. Now I realize it goes so fast because we are waiting for something. Waiting for the weekend, waiting for our husbands to get home, waiting for a break. We don’t just live in the moment and ENJOY the moment.
I am going to strive to do better. I am going to strive to BE better for my daughters. Today, I complained to my husband that Aubrey was misbehaving and being really sassy to me. I kept asking her “why? why are you acting like this?”. I know she’s two, but she is really a great kid and today she just seemed off. Then I realized that those puckered lips, scowl on her face, and snapping at me could have been and probably was caused by me. It hit me how my attitude towards her is shaping her; the good and the bad.
Tomorrow is going to be different. I am going to pause and think about what to say to Aubrey instead of raising my voice or glaring. I am going to play in her kitchen with her and pretend-eat all of the food she makes for me. I’m going to put my phone down and stop looking at the time. When she asks me for a snack for the forty-third time, I’m not going to snap. I don’t want another day to go by where I feel like it slipped through my fingers, and I also don’t want another day to go by where Aubrey feels like I don’t want to be there. One day, Aubrey won’t want to play with me anymore and I’m not ready for that day to come yet.