Tuesday, October 7, 2014

No, Benjamin.

He's been hearing that a lot, lately. Followed by an explanation, of course, but I feel like a broken record.

  • No, don't spit on the floor. If we do that, we will have a messy house. 
  • No, don't (insert mean thing here) your sister. We are kind to one another.
  • No, you may not put your sandwich bites in the play cart. It's unsanitary. Food needs to stay in the kitchen and on the table.
  • No, hanging on the spice cabinet will cause it to break. You've already broken two drawers recently and we don't want anymore drawers we cannot use.
  • No, you are not allowed to throw Mommy's phone because it will break.
  • No, you may not take out four pieces of string cheese, chew on them through the wrapper and put them in the pantry because that's wasting food and then they will spoil in there.
  • No, you may not take off the cap to the vinegar and chew on it. We need a cap on the vinegar and chewing on it is unsanitary.
  • No, I can't read you that book right now because I am making breakfast/lunch/dinner. I will read it when I am done, but I must make it now because we are all hungry (to which he replies, "No Benjamin eat breakfast/lunch/dinner." and I reply, "But Mommy and Daddy and Sister are hungry and I need to make us food.")

I could go on. FOR DAYS. Not just that, but other explanations of how leaving his sandwich on the table without eating it for hours will result in flies eating it. So. just. please. eat. the. stupid. sandwich (as I stare at one next to me that he left there and did not eat during lunch with a fly on it).

I have had such a short fuse with him lately. Not-so-lucky for me, Dad has a business dinner tonight and I've had one of those mornings that involved everything going wrong: the neoprene handlebar on my BOB ripped because it was in the trunk and was scraped off somehow, the store was out of most of the things I had on my list, the next store was closed, there was no parking at the next place until I got all the way to the entrance carrying the sleeping baby in the baby carrier that now weighs 25lbs which then woke her up from her useless 10 minute morning nap, thus resulting in me getting little done while Benjamin was at school this morning and a cranky and clingy baby to contend with when we picked up brother. Phew, run-on sentence totally necessary there for effect. Correct use of affect/effect? Oh, I don't care. I'm exhausted and it's my only "free" time until bedtime.

He's jealous of Claire getting lots of attention. It's not that I want to give her more attention, it's just that she's at the stage where she must be held or she will lose her everloving mind and it's all I can do to keep myself from cracking open a beer before dinnertime. She can't crawl yet, so instead she just requires I hold her. I remember Benjamin at this stage and how exhausting that was toting him around all day, but I didn't have an older sibling (insert crying face emoticon here) to manage at the same time.

I've been hearing "put baby down" and "no feed baby" a whole lot lately. But I can't. I kind of have to feed her. She's better than most babies and knocks that business out in about 5 minutes, but asking him to wait that long and denying him the rights to "read airplane book" for the 17th time that day already because of sister's needs starts to wear on him. In that 5-minute time of feeding her, he usually finds me (as I hide lately bc she gets so distracted) and proceeds to pester me which then causes sister to turn away and spray milk everywhere, ruining her feed entirely.

I need to carve out some Benjamin and Mommy time, but I simply have no idea what to do with little sister. She's got minor separation anxiety and she's awake during almost every minute of his waking hours, too. There's that morning nap she takes that he doesn't, but we're usually gallivanting around the children's museum or at storytime or at preschool during that time as she naps on-the-go.

It will get easier as they get older, I'm sure. But right now, it takes everything in me to tolerate his toddler tantrums and nonsense when I know the root cause of some of those things are the very things I can't really fix right now.

#luckymomproblems, I know. But in the midst of this chaos, I will admit defeat. So then, #sendvodka.


Brooke said... [Reply to comment]

I'm not quite in the thick of this yet, since Coco is still in an easy stage and sleeps a lot. But I do feel a twinge when I tell Zuzu we can't do something because her sister needs me. I've started making a big deal about telling Coco when Zuzu needs me--"Wait just a minute, Coco, Zuzu needs her milk first" or " Coco, you're too little to choose a book so sister gets to choose." Coco obviously could not care less, but Zuzu seems to take it a little better when she has to wait on Coco. It's never perfect though, and balancing the needs of two if them is not easy! I do try to give Zuzu a specific task or project (like coloring) before I nurse the baby, but that's mostly so I can zone out for a minute. Good luck--I know you're doing a great job. It's a tough stage but won't be long before Claire is weaned and Benjamin is going to preschool... And a beer with lunch is just what you need every now and again.

Brooke said... [Reply to comment]

And yes--correct use of effect. Affect is a verb ( it starts with A so is an Action).

LookItsJessica said... [Reply to comment]

It must be so tough but I feel I can't commiserate as much because I'm not juggling two kids at the moment *cry face emoticon also*

BUT I sooo feel you on telling the toddler "no" a lot. As soon as I get Avy's jacket and shoes on she LOVES to run to the other end of the house and by the time I get there she has both items off and is hiding under a table. Joy! Then, when we are exiting the house into the garage to get in the car, she runs out the garage and over to the front porch literally EVERY SINGLE TIME WE LEAVE. And stands there until I march over and collect her.

I lol-d at the temptation to crack open a before dinner! #fiveoclocksomewhere

Kari said... [Reply to comment]

#sendvodka is the best hashtag I have ever seen.

Jenny said... [Reply to comment]

Hang in there, it will pass and neither of you will require therapy for 10 years!

The hardest thing for me to learn as a mom has been the art of ignoring. I don't have a good poker face, and usually an eye twitches at certain words or behavior, eliciting gales of maniacal laughter from the offending child. Sometimes their behavior requires that I just have to clear the plate or project without saying a word, and then distract them with the next activity. No words necessary, and I ran out anyways.

Nick's been gone 8 out of the past 14 days (5, then 3 on conference trips) in the middle of me prepping a garage sale, yikes. It's hard to be solo, plan something fun, and then never even get to our destination because of poor behavior! I lose out, too!! Feel trapped, but long, slow mornings at home seem to help their attitudes and give me quiet.

Hang in there! Once they are 2 and 4, you can start using this trick, "The crazier you are while I'm on the phone, the longer I will talk" or "The more you treat this store like a playground, the more long, boring errands I will find to do." I finished talking to my brother outside in the driveway while they sat in the car until quiet... a reverse cone of silence ;-)

Anne said... [Reply to comment]

I'm glad it isn't just me (although sorry for both of us)...I feel like all I say is "no" to Gracie these days and go to bed feeling like a crappy mom because of it. I know she just wants attention but I currently have a two month old attached to my chest 24/7- but, as you said, #luckymomprobs