Sometimes bedtime comes and I am wishing for a do over; knowing I didn’t make the best parenting decisions during a rough day.
Today is not one of those days! I am so, so glad the day is over; the morning was so terrible I don’t even wish for a do over. I am just glad for the fresh day that is coming tomorrow and wishing I could wipe today off of the calendar.
It was a school day. The first day of book work in a long time thanks to an adventurous two weeks. Apparently no one was in the right frame of mind to do school. Most of the kids cried at least once, over a silly issue. Our usual low stress schoolwork was anything but. Missed a word on a spelling test- just write it three times and move it to next week’s list. Careless math mistakes equal a quick fix and move on. Today, tears and frustration. Even ‘fun’ handwriting was torture.
Work was just slow too, dragging the day on longer than necessary. Maybe we should have put the books away and gone outside to play- but I don’t want the kids to think that a hard day or poor attitude equals a reward of putting the problems away and moving on to a new, fun activity.
Is there a right answer? Probably not. As adults sometimes they will have to slog through tough stuff, other times they will be able to throw in the towel and move on.
I even had a new educational toy for the little ones this morning. But, Emily was just bent on being tough. She began the day by asking for a certain breakfast, eating none of it and then throwing it away when I wasn’t looking. Try number two for food later in the morning resulted in throwing the cereal she asked for all over the floor and (yet another) tantrum when she had to pick it up.
School time was a barrage of screaming and tears, though I tried to engage her in toys and activities. If a sibling touched it she wanted it, but anything else she refused to look at or play with. I am happy to just hold her on my hip as I move from big kid to big kid teaching. None of it made her happy. By 10am her little face was covered in snot and I was already past the point of calmness.
Try number 3 for food resulted in two bites of bologna and the same bowl of cereal thrown on the floor again.
At that point I decided she must be either hungry or tired, since we’d already tried food, the best (and safest) place for her was in her bed. So much for making the transition to naps in her toddler bed smoothly, because she’s probably going to hate it forever now.
When I ran downstairs to check on the big kids, she managed to get her diaper off, strip her own bed, and throw every blanket and toy (and there are a ton) from her sister’s bed to the floor.
Finally, after putting her back into her bed several times, she fell asleep.
The sight of her tiny sleeping body curled up on her bed, in nothing but a diaper, her back still heaving from crying broke my heart. Worst mother ever.
The only saving grace was that for a toddler after nap-time might as well be a brand new day. The anger and horrible attitude were forgotten. Her mood was better, but my nerves were beyond shot.
Don’t let the adorable toddler in these photos fool you- she can be a TERROR! Her shirt says, “It’s not easy being a crab” but I think it should say, “It’s harder to be the crab’s mother!”