Monday, September 19, 2011

Of snakes and beet vomit


"There's a snake in the kitchen, Mommy!"

That was the beginning of the end.

I kept telling myself that Thomas didn't know what a snake was, even though his hand gestures led me to believe there was an eighteen-inch snake slithering through our house and I could not find it.

A few days later, the Wee Ski's concerned message changed. Jonathan got a very stern text message.  "Your son: the snake is under the bed."

That night, thanks to my ever-faithful reptile-fighting husband, we learned the snake had legs and was actually some sort of gecko.


The past few weeks have been challenging in the toddler/newborn world.

A combination of John Paul needing his own room (away from ours) and Thomas feeling left out in the middle of the night has made for a very cozy bed.  Thomas, our once-champion sleeper, finds himself climbing into bed with us once or twice a night. John Paul is nearing the point where he needs to cry it out at night, and that can't happen with us two feet away.   Jonathan and I end up sleeping as still as possible, which makes for a very sore morning and wondering if we ever actually went to sleep.

It's definitely a transition time.

The mantra I've been repeating is "this is simply a season in our lives."

Each night became increasingly more difficult.

The end came a few nights ago.  I was exhausted and was describing to Jonathan how I was ready to crash as soon as dinner was over, approximately 6:32 pm.

Thomas was devouring his steamed beets -- while very nutritious, also VERY red and staining.  Laughing as he started touching everything in sight, Jonathan and I both yelled when Thomas reached out for my white shirt.

Startled, it led to tears from the Wee Ski.  Then he promptly threw up all the remaining beets that he had finished.  All over the table, the floor, and me.

Which may or may not have led to tears from me.  And more tears from Thomas.

He and I climbed in the shower while Jonathan started recovery on the kitchen.

We were both still in tears until he looked up at me and said, "Sahwy, Mommy.  Cuddle in Mommy's bed?"  Yes, sweet pea.  We can.

We focused this weekend on spending time together - whether it was cleaning out the house, eating together or playing.  It was a low key weekend which ended with a good night's sleep for all of us last night.  I woke up to find both Wee Skis sound asleep (John Paul in the bassinet and Thomas between Jonathan and me) and Papa Ski and I slowly waking to our alarm clocks (blackberry + iPhone). 

Balancing my own expectations of life has been difficult of late.  What I think I can handle vs. what I truly can handle.  On the whole, the transition for our family from one to two children has been good.  But for me -- keeping up with my normal pace of life has been a significant challenge.  Emails unanswered, calls unreturned.  "Mommy guilt" is definitely in full force, and I'm still working on finding the balance to that.  My life was busy before marriage and kids...this is an entirely new world of busy. 

Restoring order to our home has been a big help in finding peace -- especially with the travel that we've done (and will be doing) this fall.  It's amazing how life feels less overwhelming when there aren't stacks of laundry staring you in the face and the unrelenting beep of the dishwasher letting you know it's time to put the dishes away.  Or an open suitcase with which I debate on whether or not I should even put it away before packing it again.

It is just a season right now, albeit a sleep-deprived season.  And as fast as I say that, another week has escaped us.  John Paul is growing, Thomas is maturing, and soon they won't need us as intensely as they do right now.

So yes, Thomas, we can cuddle. The laundry can wait and the phone can go to the machine.

And as soon as you wake up, we can cuddle again.

But no more beets for a few weeks.


Keana C. said...

Oh Shelley, this post speaks to me! The other night I was just on the verge of tears, overwhelmed by everything and worrying about everything when I saw you posted that quote on pinterest. It literally stopped me in my tracks! The timing was more than perfect and it put a lot into perspective for me.
Thank you for posting that and thank you for writing this, it helps to know that this is a normal part of life, albeit difficult at times.

Jen said...

Hi Shelley, I'm not sure if we have met before, but my husband and I are friends of Ski's from St. Martin's. We have two kiddos 3 and 20 months and live in Yelm! We would love to get together for dinner sometime and hang out. My email is jennifer.m.vawter at gmail,com and blog is Let us know if your interested and have a free evening. I loved your post, thank you for being real!

Mommy love,
Jen Vawter

Unknown said...

I totally get it my friend...and you're right, it does get easier when they get a little older and won't need you quite so much. We're finally getting to that point with my boys, and it makes a huge difference. Hang in there. And I hope we can find a time to chat on the phone one of these days...I miss you!

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