Thursday, January 17, 2013

On trying my best

Oh, we have started an opinionated stage of toddlerhood this week. I had the hiccups this morning and little man kept saying, "That's gross, Mama". And as of three days ago--as Dylan turned two years, three months, and four days old--he began saying, "I don't like it." To everything.

I don't like orange juice. I don't like sugar. I don't like trucks. I don't like French toast. I don't like Super Why. I don't like socks. I don't like naps. I don't like UPS trucks. I don't like my lunch.

Everything is "I don't like".

Contrary to all of this negativity, he has also become even more hilarious this week as his little personality is growing, a feat which I didn't think he could be capable of achieving because I'm pretty biased at how funny he is anyway.

Yesterday he refused to nap. Even when I laid in his bed with him, which is usually a guaranteed method of him conking.

He is getting his molars in and hasn't slept right in weeks. He starts calling for me most nights by three AM and in a wide awake demeanor asks me if I've seen his Matchbox school bus or the remote to his moon light. I'd love to help you, kid, but not at three AM.

I can't say I was shocked that he didn't nap yesterday because he had woken up well rested without any overnight awake episodes at 7:30, which constitutes sleeping in for him.

So we laid in his bed together in the dark as he proceeded to talk my ear off in every attempt to stall nap time.

He asked to call his grandparents (and did), and Daddy. He asked to go downstairs and if he could take the dogs for a walk or go to the store. He asked to vacuum. And my personal favorite, he squished his cheeks together and showed his chubby bunny joke to my belly for a good ten minutes because he wanted to make his sister laugh.


I've been really grouchy and sluggish lately, impatient with the dogs because my efforts are already drained on being overly cheerful to my sweet toddler, impatiently waiting for our baby to get here. I'm uncomfortable. I can't bend over, my ribs are constantly being violated by a tiny human, I'm up half the night.

I'm nesting materialistically now, buying Katie a pair of jean shorts that she will wear 6-9 months from now, debating on whether or not I should get her things we already have like high chairs and strollers. Last night Sean and Dylan stayed home together for a boys' night in while I drove to my favorite secondhand store to buy both Dylan and Kate new coats that they probably don't need but are on sale nonetheless and so are suddenly needed in my mind.

I needed to get away.

Not from Dylan particularly, but from the dogs who have been misbehaving significantly this week and from my frustrated and impatient mindset. I drove through the dark with music blasting and spent almost an hour sorting through racks of clothing for a toddler boy and an infant girl.

But after I was back in my car, a bagful of clothes heavier and $29 lighter, I suddenly wanted to race back home to Dylan. I knew he'd be waiting for me on the couch, drinking a milkie and warm and cozy in his adorable mini sweatpants. I was welcomed with a loud "Mama's home!" from Dylan and a whole bunch of affectionate kisses from the dogs. Sean soon brought Dylan to bed and he and I cuddled on the couch, his one hand on my belly rubbing the occasional Katie foot that popped up to greet her daddy.

I'm sure my hormones are making me feel so jumpy and short-tempered. I've read many birth board posts of my fellow moms-to-be feeling like their bitch side has totally won out these days and compared to their experiences I feel a bit better about my occasional quick manner. I'll be 35 weeks pregnant tomorrow, our due date is in thirty-six days.

But feeling so abrupt lately has also given me moments of extreme clarity. I feel so lucky to have my tiny yet growing family. I almost cannot explain how much joy and love I feel on a daily basis. I can't begin to count the times my toddler makes me smile and laugh. And he's so cuddly that he is happy to snuggle up to my cheek at any given moment, if I don't watch out he comes at me with wonderfully sloppy wet-lipped kisses, and says, "You're the best, Mama! I love you so much, Mama!"

I can tell you that I may not be the best Mama but I sure am the luckiest.