Best and Worst Parenting Moments (in one day)

Yesterday there were some radically contrasting highs and lows in the tapestry of our family life.

Some high points with Baby A:

  • Starting to get waking smiles this past week – the ones when she’s looking right at us, so they seem like she means them.
  • She peed on her potty for the first time! Only her second try! And she has done so three more times since then. OMG, her little face is so cute while she’s “sitting” on there. (Please click here if you think I’m a freak for putting my five-week-old on the potty.)
  • Baby burps. Is there anything more satisfying? Particularly when you have a girl – I really get a kick out of her unladylike noises (for now, at least). One of the many things that’s cute on a baby – but not so much on big people.

And some low points:

  • Always waking up with the congestion. Poor sweetie does well for the first few hours each night, but by the wee hours of the morning is feeding more and more frequently to clear her nasal passages. This is in spite of the humidifier and inclined mattress and nasal spray and a whole lotta breast milk nutrients. And I can’t keep a hat on her at night for love nor money. (Not that anyone’s offering me money.)
  • Nicking her tiny thumb while cutting her nails. BAD MOMMY MOMENT. So awful: she bled and cried really hard, and of course tears started rolling down my cheeks too. She’s fine now – you can practically watch newborns healing – but still. Traumatic.

Then there’s E, who is still so engaging and fun and silly and smart and great… and also being a frequent pain in the keister.

Yesterday he had too many episodes of whining and crying and even screaming “NO!!” at the top of his lungs. (Mostly related to screen time… sigh. But that’s another blog post.) Also several instances of doing the exact thing we’d just asked him not to do.

We got very sick of his whining and crying over nothing by the end of the day. Daddy raised his voice in frustration – which I totally understand – and E kept crying – which I also understand. At a certain point, escalation seems to be inevitable. Patience is one of the very hardest things at times like that. Plus, Sean has borne the brunt of all the whining – he’s been home for the last two weeks, between the end of school and the start of work (great timing to have days off, actually), and has been having lots of Daddy/son time while I’m with A. Much as he has enjoyed it, he has also used (up) a lot of patience.

I ended up handing the baby to Daddy and scooping up E and taking him to his room. I cuddled him and reminded him how much we love him and how we know it’s hard for things to be so different now that the baby’s here. It took him a while, but he calmed down. Then he was all confused, because wouldn’t you know it – Mama was all teary-eyed too (AGAIN). I really have been missing spending quality time with my boy, so it was a lot easier for me to distance myself from the effects of the whining.

So yeah. If you were wondering, E is definitely still adjusting to the big-brother status. Even as he fervently loves his little sister.

Big brother and little sister
The dynamic duo

Oy. Parenting is hard, eh?

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2 thoughts on “Best and Worst Parenting Moments (in one day)

  1. Rachel McQuail says:

    It certainly is! It sounds like you guys are dealing with everything really well though even though there are hard moments. (and one of the best pieces of advice I’ve gotten is to be completely honest with our kids and so when we’re feeling frustrated, to tell them!) Our E has also had some exceptionally whinny days the past few weeks and it is incredible how quickly it can use up my patience! I had to have my own little temper tantrum one day and it was only noon! :S But thankfully we got out for a walk and things were better after that.

    We are incredibly lucky that Robin is working four 9s and so we get him for 3 whole days each weekend which means he and Elliot get a lot of father/son time then while I’m more focused on Emily. However we’re discovering that the transition back to work is hard, especially as Robin not only has work on Monday but a 3 hour course in the evening so we hardly see him at all. And so tonight Elliot was having a hard time getting to sleep and started crying which is incredibly unusual these days. When I went in and asked what was wrong he said he was “sad about dada” (having to work tomorrow). A bunch of extra snuggles ensued and he was fine after that but it was still a little bit heartbreaking. Will have to remember to give lots of extra snuggles in the morning!

    And yes, it’s those snuggles in those incredible first baby smiles that truly make all the difficult (and late night) moments worth it. 🙂

    Rachel

    • diblog says:

      I agree with that advice, that it’s important to tell kids how you’re feeling too. They need to know adults are human and have limits. We always err on the side of explaining MORE, and E responds really well to that (usually). I’m glad things are going well at your house too, although obviously not without trials sometimes. Thank goodness for snuggles – they really do make a lot of things better. But getting both kids to bed at an appropriate time sounds like a challenge… I have been praying that Sean gets a reasonable day shift when he starts working, because if he were working through supper and bedtime 5-6 nights a week, I might go insane! I really hope we can get together sometime soon; Emi told me about her visit and I’m envious! Love to all of you.

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