Thursday, February 7, 2013

These Children

Mama is having a bit of a crisis. Maybe "crisis" isn't exactly accurate, but when you combine exhaustion with guilt with "I don't know what the hell I am doing anymore," crisis seems about it.
These children are my dreams come true. "Love" doesn't seem an adequate word to describe how I feel about them. I am CONSUMED with them. Completely and totally consumed.

And sometimes I am completely and totally confused.
Confused as to whether they are happy. Confused as to whether they are having their needs met. Confused at to what it is exactly that I am doing wrong. Because sometimes I am pretty sure the children want us to move out and leave the house to them so they can destroy it and enjoy every single minute.
You see, these children never stop moving. Ever. Like they only are still when they sleep. And this moving is sometimes a tad bit mischevious. And exasperating. And exhausting. And just plain messy. And for a woman who as a child spent her time reading and writing and playing house or school - and who might have been rumored to hang out with the duty during recess or hang out with the adults during a play date - this MOVING-ALL-THE-FREAKING-TIME thing is new to me.

There is the climbing of shelves and cabinets and sinks. There is the moving of chairs over to
difficult-to-climb areas in order to subsequently climb them. Then water is turned on and spices are poured out and toliet paper is dismantled and strewn about the floor.  And it all happens so fast that I am left wondering "How in the hell did that happen so fast?" One kid goes one way, the other kid goes the other way, and I am left to ponder what Robert Frost really meant when he wrote "Two roads diverged..." Because if you come to my house, I will show you what he meant and you might just think to yourself, "Shit. Those kids are impressive."
There is the fighting. The fighting that involves pushing and kicking and scratching and screaming and crying. Because it doesn't matter that we have every toy imaginable for toddlers, or that often we have TWO of every toy imaginable for toddlers. If he has THAT train, the other one wants THAT train. If he has THAT cookie, the other one wants THAT cookie. Even if his freakin' cookie is bigger than the other cookie!!! Some days, I just want to take THAT train and THAT cookie and throw them far, far, far away. Okay, maybe I'd eat the cookie, but whatever.
There are the full-blown temper tantrums right before dinner. Like almost every single night. Tempter tantrums of enormous magnitudes. Temper tantrums that involve screaming and crying and throwing food and water for reasons I cannot even begin to discern. Which makes me want to throw my food and my water across the room too. If you can't beat 'em, you might as well join 'em, right?
Oh, and in an ironic twist to the end of any day, let's not try to read books together before bedtime. These children must be separated, my friends, because in case you can't already tell, they're best friends. They're best friends now - now, right before bedtime - who giggle over inside jokes and looks that these parental units clearly do not get, and who must give each other 15,000 hugs and kisses as part of the bedtime ritual.
I am praying that this is just life. That this is just how it goes. I've never done this before, so it's sort of hard to tell. When your first is only  12 1/2-months-old when the second one comes, you don't have the luxury of knowing that your kids are doing what other kids are doing, that your kids are actually just fine, and that your kids really are happy and healthy and thriving.
And for those of you who told me that boys are so much easier than girls, you can kiss it. I love you, but you can kiss it where the sun don't shine.
The end.

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