Monday, February 11, 2013

"Grit" and Bear it.

I am not a perfect mother. For some reason, when you have six kids running through your house, or trucking along behind you at the grocery store, people draw a number of conclusions. The first is something like "Wow, you must really have it together." I don't. The second is "Man, your marriage must be a fairytale." It's not. And the third is, "You must be rich." We aren't. In fact, most of the things that "people" think it must take to raise six kids, we don't have. The biggest of which is endless patience. I will admit that yesterday was a sad example of my sometimes less than desirable length fuse. For starters, I just could not get my head in the game. Honestly, I probably need to get out more. We didn't go to church. We could have, but the ability to sleep in took over, and Sunday ended up being the day of rest but certainly not one of spiritual renewal. It wasn't really the spiritual renewal I needed though, it was just a chance to put on "real" clothes and a little bit of make-up and remember what the world looks like beyond the corn fields outside. Second, I have a teething, almost two year old. Which is in my opinion is way worse than a teething infant. I mentioned, he's almost two, which equals loud, persistant, belligerence. Third, we have a super old farmhouse. It's wonderful in many ways, but the steps in this house isn't one of them. They are steep and slippery and well....they just stink. They are also configured in such a way that they're almost impossible to gate off. We figured out how. He figured out how to climb over. Sigh....we taught him to climb them safely which he can do. Then we taught him to bump, on his bottom, back down. He's good at that too. But sometimes between the travel up, or the trip back down, he gets undecided on the direction, and won't move. This happened yesterday. And after a nearly full day of listening to him whining and complaining, and yelling, and asking to be picked up, etc, etc, I was DONE. Then the stair thing happened. He wanted to go up and play in his brother's room. He got halfway up, and stopped. He sat there. I tried to get him to come down, standing at the bottom with an infant in my arms, and his brothers stood at the top and tried to entice him to come didn't matter WHERE he went, as long as it wasn't ON the steps. Yes, I could have gone up and carried him down (which I eventually did) but the point is for him to use the steps independently, and get from point A to point B without assistance. So as I stood there, asking nicely, attempting to get him to WANT to come down, I got increasingly frustrated. I said Evan, please come down, he yelled MOMMMMMY, annoyed that I was bothering him. I said You can't stay on the steps, come down and play blocks, and he stomped his feet and shook his head. And I found myself gritting my teeth, trying to remain calm, and not yell. I gritted my teeth so hard in fact that I. chipped. my. tooth. ---- time for a mommy time out. I handed the baby to my son, walked up the steps, tucked that toddler under my arm and marched him down to his room, and left them to play. I locked myself in the bathroom. Half for the quiet, and half to check out the damage in my mouth. It's minor, but it needs to be fixed. I read once that a mother's patience are like a tube of toothpaste, never really all gone. I'm not sure I agree with that. Mine are more like a box of Cherrios. There is a definite end, and they just get crummier the closer you get to the bottom. With any luck, the weather will start to improve and we will be able to spread out in the yard, soak up some much needed Vitamin D, and begin to feel alive again. In the meantime, I have a dentist appointment to make...

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