Wednesday, June 2, 2010
My Evening Went Like This...
My children then walk away pouting and plop themselves on the floor in the middle of the mess and proceed to argue about who has to pick up which piece of paper on the floor. So, far no one has put away anything...and the disagreement escalates to screaming and crying, at which point I intervene, more for my own sanity than any other reason.
"STOP IT! STOP IT RIGHT NOW!!!"
I handled it very calmly and rationally and set a great example for them.
"STOP YELLING AT EACH OTHER!!!!!"
[Yes, that was sarcasm before. It was not my finest moment. Oh, but it gets worse.]
After threatening, [and almost hoping they would continue to ignore my instructions so I could follow through] to send them to bed immediately if the 10 pieces of paper, 1 pair of scissors, and 2 glue sticks were not properly put away within the next 2 minutes, child #1 very reluctantly dragged himself around and accomplished the task, all the while complaining that child #2 wasn't doing it. Child #2 picked up 1 piece of paper just to prove him wrong no doubt and then returned to sprawling out on the dirty kitchen floor while I'm attempting to finish dinner with my 9 week old baby in arms.
I set baby down, [I needed both hands for a moment] and now baby is screaming. Child #1 is upset that baby is screaming and demands I pick baby up. At the same time, child #2 is notifying me that she does not at all like my choice of food for dinner and has absolutely no intention of eating any of it. I let her know I'm sorry that she doesn't particularly care for what I made, then instruct her that regardless, she will most certainly be eating some of it.
At this point child #1 asks "what?" I reply that I was speaking to his sister. He demands to know what I said. I reply that I was not speaking to him and he didn't need to know. He begins to yell about me not telling him and that he's mad because he couldn't hear what I said and he wants to know. I tell him to sit down and be "QUIET!"
I serve the meal...and the entire time, child #1 is requesting permission for activities he would like to do after dinner, to which I respond that he needs to finish dinner first and then we will discuss it. "Okay" he replies, and then proceeds to ask again. Child #2 is dropping food onto the floor and complaining that she doesn't like it and "will not eat it at all". "Fine,” I say, “but you will be hungry and I will not be giving you anything else to eat tonight."
Child #2: "Okay."
Child #1: begins screaming and crying "No! No! You can't...she's going to be HUNGRY!!!"
Meanwhile, I'm trying to eat my dinner while nursing the baby who is flailing and crying because she needs to burp, so I lift her up to burp her and that's more painful for her, so now she's screaming. Her discomfort escalates for about 10 minutes or so until she finally pukes all over the both of us and is now ready to nurse again.
The phone rings, and while I'm on the phone, child #2 decides to continue playing with and complaining about her dinner, but not really eating it.
Dinner is cleared eventually, and both children ended up eating at least most of it. I washed the dishes [with baby in my arms...yes, even the pots...I'm just that talented.] and child #1 is now playing a video game, while child #2 is watching. Baby falls asleep in my arms and I gingerly lay her down in her car seat, hoping she will rest long enough so I can squeeze in a shower. [Not only had I not showered yet today, but was also now covered in spit-up.]
At this point I decide to get children 1 & 2 ready for bed and instruct child #2 to go potty. She argues and eventually meanders her way to the bathroom, then sits down and plays. I walk by the bathroom and remind her again to stop playing and go potty. She responds with a snippy, "I am." [And continues to play]
Child #1 demands my attention, I honestly can't remember why, but I adressed him.
Then, as I turn back around to deal with child #2, she announces with a panicked voice, "Mom, I did not ruin my big girls." [translation: I definitely peed my pants because I was ignoring you and being defiant and now I really wish I had listened because I know I'm in huge trouble.]
We stare at each other for a moment...
Look down at the puddle by her feet...
Look up at each other again...
She says, "Mom, I will not do it again."
Me: nothing. I just breathe. I have no energy left for anything else.
I put her in the bathtub and instruct her to remove her clothing. Then go and get some rags and cleaner to take care of the puddle.
Child #1 is now running back and forth across the house. I ask him to stop, noting that his baby sister is sleeping and I would like her not to be woken up and reminding him that I never let him run in the house anyways. To which he says, "Ok". And I return to my cleaning.
The mess is now cared for and Child #2 has undressed herself quite unhappily. [Apparently mom should be the one to touch the wet and dirty clothing, not her.] Now I hear crying in the other room. Baby is awake. And I also hear thundering footsteps across the kitchen floor. Then I hear it again.
Child #1 is questioned, and indeed he had continued to run through the house. Yes, he fully understood that he had been instructed not to. Yes, he knew it was going to wake up baby. And no, he wasn't going to run anymore. He is then informed that he needs to put away his video game and will not be playing anymore tonight as a punishment for disobeying me. To this he responds with a passionate, "WAHHHHHHHH!!!!" And begins yelling, "WHY MOM?!" over and over, between the "WAhh!"s.
Now I move crying baby's car seat into the bathroom and turn on the water for Child #2 who is now naked and cold. She doesn't like the water on her and screams at the top of her lungs..in the shower...in the bathroom...and it echoed. Nice. Now baby is deaf. [Probably not really, but I was almost wishing I could go temporarily deaf for the remainder of the night.]
I calm her down and realize that child #1 is still screaming. So I put away the game for him, then inform him that he will not be playing for a week now. Naturally, he screams louder. I spank him and send him to his room.
I gather pjs for child #2 and remove her from the shower. Baby is now crying and child #1 is now quiet. I talk with him about why he was being punished.
I wait for baby to fall back asleep and then shower...finally.
It's now 7:00 and I brush teeth for children 1&2. Child #1 decides his face is dirty and uses a washcloth to clean it off. Then he looks at child #2 and determines her face is also dirty, and proceeds to clean it for her. Child #2 dislikes it and screams. Since baby is still in the bathroom with us all, she wakes up. Child #1 is crying because child #2 is crying and baby is crying because our house is INSANE!
I want to cry...but don't...yet.
I yell at child #2 for yelling [brilliant, mom, brilliant, yell at them for yelling...that's some great parenting there.] [again, sarcasm] and rush children 1&2 off to bed, kiss them quickly and reluctantly, force out an "I love you." to each of them, and then go to comfort hysterical baby...who is wet and needs her diaper changed.
I sit down with fussy baby and nurse her. She again needs to burp, so I hold her up, to which she cries, I lay her down, she cries louder. We continue trying various positions for about 15 minutes until finally she burps, spits up chunky milk all down my chest and clean pajamas and bobs her head searching for something more to eat. And then she poops and her diaper leaks on us both.
I just breathe.
I think I need to pray. And then wash some laundry.