Monday, January 28, 2013

This just in

S cut her first tooth. Big girl!!!

Paging Natalie.

Natalie has the happiest natural disposition. Ever.  But now she is two.  Where has the unsolicited happiness gone sometimes?

Setting: on the route to pick up e from preschool
Mom: Natalie, are you a happy baby?
Natalie: no, I'm crabby
Mom: why?
N: because I'm frustrated (pronounced shush rated)
M: how come?
N: because I'm mad
M: why?
N: because I'm whining
M: why?
N: because I'm crying (pronounced ca wying)


Sunday, January 27, 2013

She's back.

Once upon a time, I called my oldest sister (aka my sanity hotline when I am out of good ideas) to ask her what to do with my oldest. She was acting completely irrational, out of sorts and generally making me crazy. She was 18 months old at the time,  Big sis laughed and said " it's the terrible twos. Hunker down and wait till she turns 4.  That's pretty much all you can do!"

I am here to tell you she was right.  Our first Sunday here in our new pad, E goes to her primary class where they give her a CTR ring.  She practically a floated out of the room after class and showed it to me. The first thing out of her mouth was "mom, Natalie would love one of these. I want to go ask my teachers if they have any extras that I can give to Natalie." 

Earlier this week, we were heading back from my sister's house way later than planned.  i've been sick all week and i was worn out and feeling too blah to make dinner. the hubs wasn't going to be home for dinner so i just drove thru and got some chicken nuggets and fries for the girls,  (don't judge. i was sick!!!) anyway, we got home and i set their dinner out for them.  i was feeding S some delicious strained squash when E looks up and sayd "mom, where are your chicken nuggets? i told her  i didnt get any so she asks me if i got something else for my dinner. i told her that i didnt.  she git this super sad look on her face and said that since i didnt have any dinner, she really wanted to share hers with me.  i told here i wasn't hungry and she was just insistent that i had to eat some of her dinner,.  i tried to reassure her that i did not want any but she kept insisting and insisting and finally tried feeding me french fries and dropping them off in front of my seat t the table,  See? My super sweet thoughtful intuitive girl is 4...and I think she is coming back to me!

Natalie was whining vigorously and forever long about something, who knows what.  I smiled at E and said "what are we going to do with her?" E shrugs and says "just love her, Mom" 

Oh...but in case you think all sass is gone, on the way home from church today she saw a new restaurant sign and asked if we could try it out sometime.  I said maybe,  from the back of the car I hear "maybe means "no" Mom."  What can I say? She is right!

You know who you are...

Actually, now that I think about it, women like you never do know who you are.  It's simply not in your nature. You see me, the mom of a brand new family in your ward, walk in to church just as the opening hymn is starting. You see my three tiny girls in tow. You see me survey the chapel and the overflow only to realize that a missionary has returned home this week and there is no where for me and my girls to sit. You hear me try to hush their discontent at being dragged back to the foyer where I tell them we'll spend the rest of the meeting. With Adam out of town yet again and some rather unenthusiastic little ones, I tell myself it will be better for everyone if we just stay out of the way.

And to my utter shock, you kind sweet soul, you come almost immediately out the same door I only just walked out to tell me you've made some room for my children and I in your row.  In your tight little row, I can see you have rearranged your things, asked your benevolent row mates to scoot over and are standing aside to let my family and I pass.  We sit down and make is through soundly half of the meeting without a meltdown.  And moms of little ones close in age know what comes next.  The little one registers her discontent.  The two year old matches it with her own.  The four year old starts asking questions like "why are they freaking out?"   Meanwhile I am trying to dodge the back arching, head rearing of the baby  and the laying on the floor of the tantering two year old as  I calculate how I will gracefully drag my unwilling toddler, my wailing infant and my confused toddler out of the aisle while hurdling you and hopefully not thwacking you in your beautifully coifed    Head. Naturally, i am secretly chiding myself for not refused your kind invitation to come back into the meeting because i really should have just stayed in the lobby and now look at the mess i have to get out of.  But before I got to a solution, you have artfully swooped up the baby and enlisted your neighbor to hold the toddler. Both have stopped fussing and settled happily in before I knew what was happening. And there they stayed until the meeting ended.  As the meeting ends, you float over and thank me for allowing me the pleasure of holding my children.  And you were so enthusiastic, I actually believe you meant it.  When I told you that my husband was out of town and that I was sure we could be less unruly next Sunday, you simply said that it was great that I had come to church while he was gone but that you hoped that I would still allow you the privilege of holding my girls even when he was in town.

This week, now weeks since that Sunday, I watched you swoop in and soothe another woman's baby. A woman who was also flying solo. I saw the grateful relief on her face when her little one who was  a little unruly was quieted by someone who was thrilled to be holding a baby. I thought it was time I thanked you. For the obvious reasons, of course, but more particularly for being "that woman."   One who, I later learned, remembers very vividly being a mom of small children who occasionally talked a little louder, protested a bit more fervently than may have been called for in sacrament meeting while her hubby was out of pocket and who genuinely misses having the responsibility for soothing those tiny tantrums. Thank you for reminding me how much I'll miss this stage even ten years from now.  Thank you for reminding me that my children and I are not nuisances at church even if we make sacrament meeting a little louder.  Thank for not being that older woman who turned around literally every 30 seconds to scowl at me or my sweet babies because I seriously just about burst in to tears.  I felt so uncomfortable for how upset I was clearly making her.  But I needed that. Because since that day, I have been praying that I will never forget the difference between Miss Scowlyface and my dear super hero pinch hitting supper nanny.  I hope to never forget the kindness of the latter.  She had no idea who I was, that my babies were sick of Daddy being out of town, that I was wishing I had just hidden in the corner.  I hope I will remember that I have a choice in how I react to sitiuations and I hope I can rise above being Scowlyface lady.  Yes, "that woman," I want to be you when I grow up. Thank you, my dear.