I sat down in the kitchen today and my husband said to me
“You look pretty”.
He smiled back and did a little surprised laugh
“You look even prettier now you are smiling”.
“I smile all the time!” I say, mock-shocked, pretending to be offended
“No” he said, obviously thinking, “You don’t. I have not seen you smile all week”.
Ahhhh shit. He is right.
And this is why.
I swear I have been loyal to my husband, OK? Our kids come from the exact same gene pool. And so *rubs forehead*
A+B = C…
A+B = J…. eh?
When Ed was Alex’s age he had his moments. I called in support from Sure Start who sent round a tutor to help me with Ed’s tantrums. And it was to help me, not him, because, I just didn’t get how to deal with said tantrums. I was 8 months pregnant with Alex, and had no idea about the terrible two’s. Whilst she sat there, chatting to me about a plan of action, Ed had dialled 999 and shoved the phone down the back of the sofa. I could hear a teeny tiny voice saying “Hello? Do you require the emergency services?”. You can imagine my horror at the timing of this act, right? Well, actually teeny tiny voice, yes. Yes I do require emergency help. Send round men in white coats. For me.
But always with Ed, if I told him not to do something, he might have created bloody hell and fuss and explode, but he would eventually do it.
Alex? Nah. Jog on, mama.
They have the same genetics. They have the same make-up. How how how are they so different?
If Alex could put two fingers up at me, I swear (pun intened), he would. He just doesn’t know how to do it yet. But, like learning how to write his name and how to use the toilet, it will happen. It doesn’t really matter that he can’t do it yet though – he does it in his head anyway.
Alex scribbled on the wall twice in as many days this week. I know kids do this, it is annoying and naughty but sort of like, saying “F*ck!” for the first time, or pulling your pants down and mooning someone out of your grandad’s camper van on the motorway. Normals.
So, I put him in prison (his cot) for 45 minutes. FORTY FIVE MINUTES. Did he care? Did he hell. He sang. The whole time. Oh no, wait, not the whole time. When my dad arrived after a 2 1/2 hour trip to see them, Alex shouted downtsairs
Did he try to escape. Nah? Not because he was afraid of the consequences. But purely because he couldn’t be arsed.
A friend said to me
“It is frustrating trying to discipline a child who couldn’t care less”.
The same friend said
“It will get better”.
I hope so. She should too. Because I know where she lives. She owes me a well behaved child.
But the real problem comes when child A combines forces with child B. When one hurricane joins forces with another…and then bashes in to Hurricane Mummy. It creates The Perfect Storm.
And in the eye of the storm is a momentary silence, where all the air has been sucked out of the room…like when you dive bomb in to a swimming pool and your hearing goes instantly, whoooshed away like you are deaf and you can only hear a very dull thud, thud, thud, before you touch the bottom of the pool with your toes and push back up to the surface..
Someone told me not to take it personally when they get like this. Which is 100% right of course. But when you have a week like this *sighs and cries a bit*, it is impossible to not take it personally. Because the moment the first bubble of negativity pops in the morning, at 7am, and you are forced to jump the first hurdle, knowing full well you have a whole track of the feckers to jump during the day, it is incredibly hard not to take it as a personal attack on you. Because knowing you have another 12 hours of these tiny little silly fights makes a little piece of you collapse inside. Because actually, yeah, you know what, however childish and pathetic and “poor me” it sounds, someone has been mean to me. And I don’t get why. Why? Why? I am a nice mummy.
But they are just kids. Just wee little babies. Pushing limits.
Pushing my limits as well as theirs. But learning and just being kids. I do know this.
So here are some truths. People don’t tend to be honest. People don’t like to admit weakness. It is incredibly lonely when your children are playing up and being little crapbags. I am the worlds biggest say-er-er of
“Oh blimey! Don’t go through it alone! Come round to mine! Drop the kids off and go and have a break”.
But you don’t really want someone else to see you telling your kids off, whilst on the verge of tears yourself. It is exhausting pretending you are in control of a naff situation when, really, you arn’t.
There is a helluvalotta
“Oh I am ok! Oh, it’s fine! Really, truly!”
Well, it is lies. Sometimes you just have a shit week.
I cried on Skype yesterday morning. To my brother and my sister-in-law. They live in Australia but on Friday morning they were sat opposite me, across the dining table. I couldn’t help it. I just started to cry. It was pretty cruel of me to do, actually. I saw my sister-in-law brush at her face (gently. Like she was hoping I wouldn’t notice she was crying too. I did) and my brother looked pained because he was so far away and just wanted to help me out a bit.
I shouldn’t have done it. But I was just a bit tired.
Today was better. I took this photo of Alex and me. It is for my husband.