Some days we move along at a perfect beat. It's a true jazz rhythm, slow and sometimes halting, always with a strong back-beat, and we jive right along in perfect 3 part harmony. I contribute this to all the Ella I sing when my children are trapped in my womb and must listen and these are the days that I love, the days when it seems like nothing has really happened. Meals prepared, eaten, babies nursed burbed nursed changed nursed and burped again, toys gotten out and cleaned up and repeat; a joke is shared; cuddles are enjoyed; banana bread baked; daddy's arrival celebrated.

Yesterday was not one of those days.

Yesterday was not Jazz at all.

When Josh walked in the door I think I said something along the lines of "Zeke is screaming because I made him come inside a half hour ago when it got dark, Mal is screaming because Zeke is screaming, and I havent started dinner yet. Welcome home."

These days will happen, I've learned, and when the boys were finally in bed asleep I took the time to look back and really think thru what parts of the day worked, and what parts didnt, and why it was so. I know that I cant control everything but I am also aware that I am the one that sets the beat for our day. And that it's when I am at my best that my children have the chance to be their best as well. So much of parenting, I've found, is discipline but suprisingly its mostly SELF-discipline. Was I patient? Were my expectations realistic? Was I emotionally grounded? Was I distracted? Was I available when needed?

I am the one that sets the beat to our day and its a heady responsibiliy. And maybe one of the most valuable lessons I can give to my children is to teach them that not even I am always at my best. We get thru the day, we look back on why it was hard, we ask forgiveness, and we try again.


lucy s. said...

I have a simple question, but coming from a mom ljust ike you (21month old toddler and a 2 month old baby - both boys)....when exactly do you shower, and how? I am having a hard time with that menial task and looking for your words of wisdom!

coco-ono said...

Ah showering. So seemingly simple before you have kids...let alone 2 kids!

Usually I put Mal in his bouncy chair in the bathroom, right outside the curtain so I can see him and let Zeke have free rein over the house. It generally works if I do it first thing in the morning, get Zeke interested in something, and Mal is in a good mood. Other times Mal cries the whole time and I come out to a huge mess!

I know a lot of moms who reserve cartoon time for their showers and have great luck with it.

I know other moms who let their toddler shower with them. Zeke hates showers so I've never been able to do that.

Sometimes if we are home all morning I will wait to shower until the afternoon when they are both asleep for their nap and put the moniter in the bathroom so I can listen. I just hope that neither one wakes up and do the most important cleaning first in case I have to get out!

Other times I just wait to shower until my husband gets home and we've finished dinner. I hate going to bed with wet hair but you do what you have to do!

Sorry I have no real "wisdom". Showering is hard. I would def. suggest some special toy or activity for the toddler if he's really into getting into trouble when you arent looking. And obviously putting the baby in a safe location that he enjoys, preferably where you can see him.

Domrese Family Blog said...

When teaching, I read that 80% of student MISbehavior is attributed to the teacher. I assume the same for parenting. Why did my child misbehave? What did I do that set my child up for misbehaving? Or better yet, what did I NOT do? Sometimes it's just a fluke, but more often than not, the misbehavior can be attributed to me. The good news is that the same is true for good behavior!(I believe)

*And on the shower note...I have to shower at night when all kids are in bed. Then I stay awake long enough to let it dry as much as possible. I've learned to deal with it. Then I can have a shower that is as long as I want it to be with no interruptions. :)