The kids are growing so fast. You hear it all the time when you are young. “Where is the time going?” “You’ve gotten so big!” “Every time I see you you’ve grown!” Then it happens to you. It happens to your children and you see for yourself. I am going to turn into one of those parents who tell my children that they will only understand one day when they have their own, because that is the truth. You just do not have any concept of how much wisdom your parents (in my case grandparents) pass on to you as a child or teenager until your time comes. It is such a shame. I just know that my children will also roll their eyes at me when I tell theme these wise things and one day they will look back and they will get it.
I am watching my children grow and it truly is a privilege to see them develop and come into their own. Sometimes I catch myself listening to one of them breathe, or their heartbeat and sit in awe of these people I had a hand in creating. It truly is a miracle and I pause to acknowledge this every now and then. A friend asked me the other day “Don’t you sometimes look at your life and wonder: Is this it?”. No. I can’t say that I do. I look at my life and I think “This is it!” I must say that I am grateful and content. Yes, I could use more money. Who couldn’t? Yes, I want a house of my own, but I have a roof over my head. Yes, a new car would be nice, but I have a functioning car right now which takes us everywhere we need to be. It would be greedy to ask for more.
Elijah is a cheeky bugger. Always has to have the last word. Underneath that prickliness there is a soft heart and tender soul. He is so gentle with his sister and he can be so kind. He can also be strong willed and defiant. He did the sweetest thing the other night. I just wanted to kiss his face! We were sitting on the couch and he wanted to take his socks off. I said no. It went like this:
Elijah: “Why can’t I take my socks off?”
Me: “It’s cold, Elijah.”
Elijah: “But I’m not cold.”
Me: “I’m cold. My feet are freezing!”
Elijah: “Let me go and fetch you some socks. Where are your socks?”
Me: “Don’t worry my boy, it is okay.”
Elijah: “I know! I’ll go fetch your slippers!”
*runs off to fetch slippers*
Elijah: “Here you go mommy. You can wear these slippers. I couldn’t find your Eeyore slippers. Only one of them.” and then he put them on for me.
Does your heart not just *MELT*? I really wanted to document this, in case I forget about it someday. Maybe someday when he turns around and spews hatred at me when he is a teenager. I suppose that is bound to happen at some point, no matter how you raise them. Please don’t let me forget this sweet boy.
Gabby is RUNNING around. Remember 5 months ago I thought she would never get up off her lazy bum and walk? Well, here she is…chasing me all over. She is quite clingy at the moment. This is new territory to me. Elijah used to be clingy with Rudi. It is endearing, but can be frustrating at the same time. When I am frustrated I try to remember that it will not be this way forever. Elijah is already running away and playing at a friends’ house for hours at a time. Sometimes on a weekend he will go play and we won’t see him for ages. We have to go and check up on him. He has completely forgotten about us. Someday, too soon, Gabby will do this too. She is slowly starting to speak. I see her watching our mouths when we say words and then try to mimic the shapes we make. I suppose she has some sort of vocabulary now, but it is at a point where Rudi and I *might* understand what she is saying (it is very helpful that she points) and where nobody else will. Any day now she is going to say “Fuck!” and we’ll laugh and scold. We are still breastfeeding, 20 months in. I feel very lucky to have come this far. Haters will hate. I am far beyond fearing judgement. My family (in laws included) don’t ever ask me when we plan to stop. People do and I find that it is quite easy to blow them off, you know, since it is none of their business in the first place. We are trying to set nursing boundaries and limit breastfeeding to happen at home only and no longer in public and so far it is working well. I don’t foresee the end of our breastfeeding journey in the near future and I am okay with that. I suspect I might have a personal cut off at 3 years, but that is not set in stone. We will see.
On Sunday in church I prayed to be a better mother. Sometimes I hear myself saying something to Elijah and recoiling at my own words. Sometimes I don’t like the way I speak to him, but by the time I realize it, the damage is done. I want to shout less. I want to be more patient. I want to be more kind. I want to be less frustrated. I want to be more present. I want to be better. It is hard. It is an uphill battle and constant work on myself. Sometimes I want to shake Rudi. I don’t know if he sees what I see. I want to smack him when he undermines my authority. He may not see the harm in something small and he undercuts me. For example, Elijah went looking for his friend. He came back with an empty bottle of Barbie bubbles. When we asked where he had found the bubbles he told us his friend and her parents weren’t home, but the door was open and he took the bubbles. I told him to take it back immediately. I explained to him that it is stealing. Rudi did not want him to take it back. He reasoned that it was empty and that if the neighbours were home now they would judge Elijah for taking the bubbles. Point completely missed. It is the principle of the matter. We ended up refilling the bubbles with bubble mixture and Elijah took it back. I don’t think they were home yet, but they are probably still scratching their heads as to how the container refilled itself. This is a classic example of where we disagree on something and it comes out in front of the kids. I know it should not. It is hard to find a moment alone to discuss these kinds of things. I am still convinced I was right though 😛
And so we will just stumble along in this parenting adventure, hoping for the best.