With a lot (read copious amounts) of coffee. And wine. And Humour. Because nothing gets you quite like getting to the mall only 30 minutes late to find that your child has shat (definition for butt-splosion of mass destruction) vertically and horizontally everywhere, through, over, around, and inside of, E-V-E-R-Y-T-H-I-N-G. But wait, it gets better, -on the day you forgot to chuck a spare change of clothes in the nappy bag!
So then you have to internalise whether to a) throw poo-baby away and just start over, (yes I know we can’t for actual really do that in real life!) b) throw poo-baby’s clothes away wipe them down with wet-wipes, (a.k.a wipe-bathe- results may vary) and leave her in the car under the capable (?) supervision of unpredicta-toddler while you just nip to kmart for a $12 top to toe transformation. Or, c) put poo-baby back in their seat, cancel your plans, and mutter to yourself about the big waste of time putting on your makeup and sucky inny underwear, and real-people clothes to go out when you *knew* this would happen.
#thisiswhywecanthave/do/gotonicethings. Ever. Or until you are like, 12.
Its not all like that, not all the time anyway, But sometimes you think to yourself as you scrape little person vomit off little person clothing, fold the 37 billionth load of washing (Like, HOW does such a little person make so much washing!???), or not fold it, because we’ve all played lets see how tall we can build mt. washmore this week….. Will it ever get better? Will it ever change? Will I ever not be standing here at the side of the cot patting and shushing and shushing and patting, crossing my fingers, toes, and legs that she’ll go back to sleep so I can get XYZ done?
I swear the first 6 months of having 2 under 2… or maybe even just having 2 children in general, was a haze of nappies, washing, breastfeeding, pumping, and trying to get a “routine” that worked and find our “rythm”. Which can I just say is suuuuper fun with a silent reflux baby. I have zero clues why they call it silent reflux when your “silent” reflux baby is screaming yours, and probably the neighbours two across, house down with the most ear jolting wail that makes the hair on your back stand on end. It also may or may not have made me (in my sleep of course) kick my husband out of bed at 2 am with a hiss-plea of “the baby’s crying again your turn.” Bless him, never mind mother Theresa or the nights of the round table, my hubby deserves ALLLLLLL the medals that were ever made.
So, we figured out a really cool rhythm/routine/flow, with the sleeping and eating and shitting patterns all worked out and planned for, and BAM! Guaranteed the moment I had it all down pat, one of them would change things up on me. Almost like it was me against them battle for survival and they used sleep deprivation as the driving force of the attack.
Along came solids, and toilet training and baby led weaning with the horrific choking episode that made me want to wrap her in cotton wool and feed her pureed food til she was 35, and many days, nights, and in between standing beside the cot, shush shushing and pat pat patting. My older girl had her first day of preschool and I didn’t cry, -on the outside anyway. I’ve loathed some moments, loved some moments so much I thought it was impossible to be so happy or content, I’ve sat in the bathroom eating chocolate and lollies behind the door while they both sat on the other side crying mumumumuuuuum (my new name). Somewhere in all of that 365 days slipped by, my baby turned one, my big girl is saying words like “biscusting” and “mufrooms” which are better ways to say them anyway if you ask me. My big girl has also learned her own mind, and how to say No, even when she shouldnt, so we’ve now embarked on the new journey of molding and shaping her into a person that thinks of others first, and is helpful and kind,- no mean feat when her example is supposed to be me!
For my younger girl’s first birthday someone gave me a print in a frame that reads “Hold her a little closer, rock her a little more, read her another story, you’ve only read her four, let her sleep on your shoulder, rejoice in her happy smile, for she is only a little girl for such a little while.” Sentimental yes, but also very profound. I’ve had many moments of holding my girls a little closer, rejoicing in smiles, and reading just one more story, this last year, BUT I’ve also said “no” to a lot of them. Sometimes you have to say no, and I get that, but sometimes, I know I need to say “yes” more often.
Routine is great, but I can let go and make memories during nap time occasionally, Tidiness is important, but making memories can be messy sometimes, and I’m pretty sure I’m not going to care in 30 years about the washing mound that is building up on my couch right now, so I’ll leave it til tomorrow and rejoice in my girls’ happy smiles today, because they’re only going to be little for such a little while.
After all, I’ve only got 320 days until my baby turns two!