Wednesday, March 05, 2008

It's That Time Again

Where your dear Unsinkable needs a break.

It seems about every six months or so, I get the Blahs. The can't shake 'em, can't break 'em Blahs. And funny enough, it usually coincides with a change in the kid's routine and growth stage. They start doing things differently, I'm completely unprepared (having just acclimated to the change from the past six months), and of course, I have responded by dropping all of my normal coping skills (praying, reading the Bible, cleaning, planning, talking with friends) and instead I spend a little more time in my pajamas, a little more time on the internet (sigh...a lot more time), I don't go outside as much and I let the kids watch way more TV than is healthy (can you say 24 hour PBS?). For all purposes, I climb inside my little shell and hope that they go back to the way they were, when I had at least an inking on how to handle them.

But Alice, it doesn't work that way.
Here's the breaks:

Tot is on a hunger strike. A hunger strike that includes only Chicken Nuggets and Mac & Cheese. And cold hot dogs (ugh.). She has also changed every sleep habit she's ever had. My once impeccable sleeper has gone AWOL. She has decided that she only wants a nap about once or twice a week. When she takes a nap, she stays up later that night and sleeps later that day. So of course, that afternoon she doesn't want a nap. That night she is a total crab pot and is exhausted at 7pm and goes to sleep and then wakes up early and then by 1pm she needs a nap. And we start it all over. Combine that with her personal little twitch inside that insists she buck me at every turn to establish her independence and how much I really plan to enforce those boundaries, along with a healthy dose of hyper activity (NEVER have I seen a more energetic and curious toddler. Never.) means that I am exhausted from dealing with her, and a lot of days I just give up. I still maintain most rules, but my spark is gone and I just want to hole up and not deal with it.

And then there is my snuggle bug, Little David. He's still a champ of a sleeper (God Bless Him), but he, too, is on a hunger strike. Only his strike does not include Mac & Cheese and hot dogs. His includes Chicken Nuggets and crackers. And that's it. He is still not talking more than 4 or 5 words, and truth be told, he really only says "Oh No" and sometimes "Mama" without prompting. He completely understands everything we say, and is very attentive and interactive, it's just like he's decided he can get along quite well without talking thankyouverymuch and would just as soon not even bother with it. Which means that if you are in my home for more than five minutes you will become intimately familiar with his own brand of communication - we call it The Call Of The Wookie. And it's loud. Little David is just now learning that he can fight back with Tot and whew! Am I playing referee more than ever. He is still my little Mama's Boy, only a little more now than ever. I seriously can not go to the bathroom without hearing crying or banging on the door and seeing some little fingers underneath. And heaven forbid I don't shut the door. Then he wants a lap seat. Can you say "too close"?

Now that I've whined, let me get to the point. We're dealing with some major transitions here and I am totally not on the ball. I really just want to keep things at that nice little stage we had about six months ago when I felt I had finally hit my stride. Then the little suckers had to go and grow up on me. Ugh. Anyways, I've just noticed that all these changes had been sneaking up on me and I was still trying to deal with it in my old ways. And when that failed (and it has been, frequently) I get frustrated, sulk and complain a little, throw up my hands, turn on the tv and skulk back to my computer and try to do something I understand.

Well, I think I'm done with that. I've decided that I'm going to take a wee break from some things. Maybe a lot of things. I'm going to take a break from blogging until next Wednesday. I realize that that is only a week and is a pretty wimpy break, but I just adore you all so much that I can't stay away too long. Also, and this is a biggie, I am going to not even get online until naptime. Eek! And that's going to be it for me for the day. And, whew I'm freaking myself out, I'm going to take a No TV break as well.

**woozy spots in my eyes**

Okay, sorry, I'm back. That was a close one. But for real, I'm going to keep the TV turned off all day except for the time Dave is home at night and wants to watch his shows (no use penalizing the poor guy for my Blahs). This will really force me to rethink how I spend my mornings and how I let my kids spend their time. I've been using the TV and the computer as crutches for too long now and I need to get back in the land of the living. I'm going to work on a few more aspects of my day to day life (I know, this is all crazy ambitious for a week, but well, you know me) and I'll let you know how it goes.

Consider this my signing off. I'll be back next Wednesday, same Bat time, same Bat channel.


Becky said...

the same thing happens here, friend. the little boogers are determined that we moms never get the hang of this parenting thing. we have been going through the same things here, only we are going on a longer period of time (i'm hoping your girl/boy combo is a little easier than the boy/boy thing.) and i find myself vegging out as well b/c some days when you are exhausted from all the insanity, you just need a mental health day. you at least have company friend. i would tell you it gets better, but i'm still not there. so here's to hoping it will.

Maude said...

I admire the fact that you're willing to examine your days and make changes when you find things you don't like. It's easy to stick with the status quo and make excuses for things we're not happy with. I think it shows a lot of maturity not only to realize when you want to make changes, but to publicly admit it. Good for you!

My one thought about the TV is that we moms really do need break during the day. As my kiddos transition(ed) out of naps, they're allowed to watch some TV or play computer games during what would have been their nap time. That way I still get some much needed down time during the afternoon. Not having the TV on the rest of the day means they actually sit down and watch it during this time when it is on. It's groovy.

I do applaud your decision to cut out the TV. What I find with the cold-turkey approach, however, is that's it's really hard to maintain for ver long. Remember how hard it was to give up Dr. Pepper for good? The same thing happened to me with Pepsi. I couldn't have cared less whether I had a Pepsi or not before I was pregnant. But once I wasn't allowed to have caffeine, I wanted Pepsi ALL the time. Sometimes it's easier to cut back to what we feel is an acceptable amount rather than give up on something all together.

Just my REALLY LONG 2 cents. :)

Momma Fish said...

Spoken like a veteran! Preach on, dear Maude.

Kristen said...

Except for the fact they are talking snow tomorrow I was going to say I would meet you at the park sometime by my house. Maybe another day...seriously.

Emily said...

I can totally understand where you're at and I'm really trying to limit my computer/tv time as well. It's tough, but it's gotta be done. Look forward to seeing you back on next week.