The Rantings - For Everyone

Hating Toddlerhood

After spending many years on mostly graveyards and then spending probably close to a year in a nighttime position (i.e after all the kids were home from school), The Boyfriend has been working a lot of days lately. It is ridiculously hard!

I don’t know why exactly his work hours have been all over the place lately. Part of it is training – he’s now having to re-take all his certification tests because he’s been working there long enough that they’re all coming up on their expiration dates. But it feels like it has been way too long of this everyday being different hours – some days bright and early in the morning and he’s getting up with the kids when they get ready for school, other days it’s halfway through the day when he’s leaving and other days the kids are all just getting home from school.

And I am just not doing well with it.

Having to spend so much of the day alone with Cazzwell is just being so hard for me. He’s officially at that age and stage that I hate. That beginning of toddlerhood where he’s into everything, making a mess of everything, whining all the time because he knows what he wants but still has no words to tell you what he wants. That constant on the move, constant neediness, constant noise. They are so all-consuming at this age.

And when the kids are home from school, it doesn’t feel so terrible. They really are some of the biggest helpers in the world. They almost enjoy the neediness, the noise, the fact that he can actually play with them now. They like having him in their world and their space. They all like the aspect of “being in charge” and “babysitting” him. So, I get some serious breaks from Cazzwell when they’re home. Sometimes, I get away with hours of not having to deal with the baby.

And when The Boyfriend is working his regular shift, he helps out in the day while the kids are at school. When I hurt too much to chase him up the stairs again or when he’s finally exhausted my whining limit, The Boyfriend is there to lend a hand. I get to enjoy Cazzwell without having to do all the work of Cazzwell.

But with everyone gone during the day and just him and I hanging out, it’s just getting to me. If I wasn’t pregnant and feeling so run down by that (don’t even get me started!), it might not bother me as much. It might not feel so overwhelming. But right now, it just feels like I’m not sleeping and all I’m doing is dealing with a kid at an age and stage that I hate and it feels like serious work!!!

This has always been a hard stage for me. I’ve felt this way with every single one of my kids. They get to about a year and a half and then they just take it all out of me. I thought when it was the first three kids, all one right after the other, I thought that it was just because there was a lot of them all at once. It was so stressful and overwhelming because there were so many of them in that stage. But Carter and Cazzwell have totally taught me that it has nothing to do with the number of them, it’s the age of them!

There was somewhat more of a gap between Carter and all the other kids. And toddlerhood with him was pure hell. He was and is more rambunctious and demanding than all of my other kids combined. There’s a huge gap between Carter and Cazzwell and toddlerhood with him is not being friendly to me. I don’t have the energy to keep up with their energy!

Needless to say, I’m feeling mighty exhausted lately…

The Rantings - For Everyone

Birthdays & Back-To-School

This is probably the first summer ever that I have not been totally overwhelmed by the kids. That was, until this morning…

Most summers, by this point, I’m almost literally pulling my hair out in frustration. Normally, I’m yelling all the time because it feels like no one is listening. Typically, I can’t wait for school to start back up just to get a break from them. But this summer hasn’t really felt like that.

They’ve all been so great this summer. I mean, they’ve been kids – so it’s been a handful and a half. There’s also a baby, been a handful and a half. But, they’ve all been helpful, they’ve all been well-behaved and relatively well-mannered. They’ve still been themselves, attitudes and all, but I haven’t felt utterly overwhelmed by them.

However, I woke up today and I’ve just been in this mood. This place, this state-of-mind, and I just suddenly feel entirely consumed by motherhood.

It’s back-to-school. It’s gotta be. It starts tomorrow and I feel like we’ve never been less prepared. Again, I know in my rational brain that we are this unprepared almost every year. Kaeidyn pointed out to me yesterday that this year is no different from last in terms of unpreparedness. But, it hit me like a ton of bricks today immediately upon waking.

I woke up just irritated and annoyed and I can’t seem to shake the feeling. Every time one of the kids makes a sound, I’m having to take a deep breath not to snap at them. Kenzie talks back and I immediately feel personally attacked – like he’s trying to pick a fight with me. And it has nothing to do with them at all and everything to do with me…

I hate when I feel like a total failure as a parent, as a Mom. It’s this time of year, I swear.

Four out of five of the kids have birthdays all one right after another – all at a time when we can’t do anything special for anyone’s birthdays because we’ve just spent every extra penny on school supplies. Which we haven’t even done yet because of the way paydays worked this year. Yet another thing that just stacks against me. It’s not the first time it’s happened – it happens more often than I’d like to admit – and we always figure it out and roll with it and make it work. But it just feels like crap.

My baby also turns one tomorrow…

I can’t even begin to describe how I feel about that. Every time anyone mentions it, I just groan loudly. How did it go by so fast?!? I mean, I remember it going fast with all the other kids, but not this fast. It doesn’t feel like he’s been around for that long. And don’t even get me started on how much I hate the ages we’re getting close to.

I’ve gone through toddlerhood four times now and hated every single moment of it, every single time. I can say pretty confidently that I despise toddlerhood. Teenagehood is being hard, but toddlerhood was harder. Toddlerhood is physically, mentally, emotionally hard. Other age stages are one or two of those things – physically and mentally hard or mentally and emotionally hard – but toddlerhood packs it all into one punch. One punch that lasts a number of years!

I hate that I’m feeling it all the day before back-to-school. It was supposed to hit a week ago so that I could deal and process before the ultimate stress began. But having it hit all at once like this, and not having the excuse of “I’m in the hospital in labor” like last year, is just making my day a crappy day.

Is it bedtime yet?!?