There is no doubt, our lives are just one series of adjustments after another.
Everything is dynamic.
Everything is always changing.
First there were the years of infertility.
Then there were newborn triplets.
Then there were toddler triplets, a surprise pregnancy with 100 pound weight gain, and a home remodel, with every appliance that we own, breaking.
Then there were toddler triplets and one newborn and a poop eating dog.
Then there were preschool aged triplets and one toddler.
There were full time jobs, part time jobs and no jobs at all.
Then there was the tentative, oh my gosh I sure hope this works out because it is costing an awful lot, start up company.
How we handle each passing phase is unique. But it seems that there is always the common thread between Charlie and I. We mustn't lose our mind. We mustn't try to figure it all out at once. We must take it one day at a time. We must do our absolute best to smile, laugh and enjoy the ride.
And whatever we do, we mustn't have more than one glass of wine at night. Because if we do - we might go a little nutso and turn the entire blog pink.
(That's a little love for my upcoming 3-Day Walk.)
Recently, we have been going through a rather difficult patch with Henry. Although his communication skills are exploding - and he is capable of speaking a lot words - Henry has these episodes of extreme frustration where he will throw himself on the ground and scream.
He wants what the triplets have.
He doesn't get it?
He doesn't want to go in the bath.
He goes in the bath?
He wants to stay in the bath.
He comes out of the bath?
He wants to stand on the table.
He is removed from the table?
He wants to run around with a pair of scissors.
Scissors are removed from his hand?
He wants to come and sleep with me at 4:00 AM.
I leave him in his crib?
He wants to be left alone.
You are looking at him?
Do you see where I am going with this?
SCREAM SCREAM SCREAM.
Henry's screams are ear piercing and they will drive me to my knees in agony.
Because of that, for a while there, I would give Henry whatever it was that he wanted.
I'd actually take toys away from the older kids and give them to the baby. I'd give him a bath at a later time and then, I'd let him stay in the bath for as long as he wanted. I'd stand by the table to make sure he wouldn't fall off. I'd shadow him as he toddled around the house with scissors and do my best to distract him with other shiny objects so I could make the exchange without tears. I'd scoop him up at the first peep and bring him in to bed with me where he would nurse for the next three hours. I actually allowed myself to become a human pacifier.
All told, I created a monster.
Sure he is cute and adorable and oh, so sweet.
Except for when he SCREAMS. Because then, he's nothing but a demon child and it takes all of my maternal grace and loving powers to not toss him in to the garage and lock the door.
For the past few weeks, I've been throwing down the hammer on Henry's tantrums. Whenever he starts to wind up and go in to a SCREAMFEST, I will put him in his crib - or stand him in the corner. But usually, I'll put him in his crib, because I know that he'll stay there. And for anyone that feels compelled to warn me that I don't want to make his "safe place" a spot for punishment, save it.
It's either his crib or duct tape.
Know what I mean - jelly bean?
I am trying to wean. A little here, a little there. I'm not ready to stop nursing altogether, but I'm also not prepared to keep nursing whenever Henry wants. Which - if I abided by his wishes - would be several times throughout the day and ALL night. So instead, I am ignoring his cries when he wakes up screaming at 4 AM.
I thought that if I just let him scream, he'd eventually go back to sleep because that's what ALL of our other children have done. But that defies the Law of Henry. Instead, he wakes up the entire house. And by 4:45, there are three groggy children standing next to my bed wondering if they can watch Curious George and eat pancakes.
AT &$%*(^$)%*&^$#(*& 4:45 IN THE MORNING.
You've never seen ugly until you've seen me being woken up two and a half hours before sunrise being asked for PANCAKES and CURIOUS GEORGE.
If only we had a larger house, with one room that I could make TOTALLY sound proof by spraying with insulating foam, I'm sure that I could get Henry on a good sleeping schedule with no trouble. Because he would soon learn that I cannot hear his cries and therefore, he'd just surrender to the beauty that is sleep. But alas, he knows that I can hear him because I think that he hears me praying, "Dear God, won't you please SHUT that child UP?"
(Yes. I do say those things. To God, even.)
The triplets no longer nap during the day. Except for today when Elizabeth took an almost two-hour nap and now, at almost 9:00 at night, she is trying to convince me that I should make her a big bowl of popcorn and paint her toenails red.
I keep thinking that one day we will have this whole parenting thing figured out.
But today is clearly not the day.
And now, I need to sign off so I can go paint my daughter's toes and pour myself another glass of Chardonnay before I scoop my two year old son up and nurse him.
Don't judge me.
Don't you dare judge me.