Meltdown.

Today was just one of those absolutely mentally exhausting days.

But it’s not as if every day is all sunshine and rainbows and then today hit like a supercell thunderstorm – no, the babies must be in a wonder month week or something because it’s been a nice gradual buildup to insanity. Right now it mostly resides with B. He’s SO unbelievably fussy. And by fussy, I mean angry. There’s nothing that he wants, or if there is, I can’t figure it out (other than the remote, my cell phone, the dog bone, his sister’s face, anything he can’t have). He is no longer content to sit. I knew this day would come, as both babies sat for months all nicely and whatnot, but now that they both want to crawl, they don’t want to sit. But they can’t crawl, not yet. And so for B – he’s just so frustrated with his little life. He doesn’t want to be held, but he doesn’t want to sit, practice tummy time, stand, jump – honestly, there’s no telling what he wants. If his sister has a toy he wants and he can’t get it, he smacks his sister in the face repeatedly. (What’s with that??) And every day, I try to get the babies out of the house or do something different, just to appease him and change up the day.

Today just wasn’t one of those days. After he woke up from his second nap (albeit a little early) he did nothing but scream for the next hour, at least. Finally I just decided to feed him early to calm him down, but he was still in hysterics while chugging his milk through his straw cup, subsequently choking, gasping, and projectile spitting it all over himself and me. C decided to join the scream fest when I ripped her out of her crib and ran down the stairs without giving her time to kind of adjust post-nap, because I had to return to the screaming child. And then, giving her no attention, I plunked her down to sit for a while as I worked on B and finally, she had enough of being forgotten. Cue tears. Sad, crocodile tears. I imagine she was wailing, “You forgot meeeeeeee”. I didn’t. I kept thanking her for being so patient and swore it would be her turn soon but for some reason, I don’t think she understood.

I say this must be a wonder week because both of them cry in hysterics multiple times a day. More B than C – he is guaranteed a massive meltdown every single time I 1) change his diaper, 2) put him in the stroller, 3) put him in the high chair, 4) put on his PJs, and 5) put him down for a nap. Let’s say on a daily basis he goes through around 5-7 diapers, 2 walks in the stroller, 3 times in the high chair, plus one PJ routine and two naps. So that’s – 13-15 meltdowns a DAY for Mr. B. The pattern here is laying him down flat and restraining him with straps. Nope, he does not like those things. Thankfully, C is less meltdown-prone but she tends to fuss more often.

And it’s days like these that kind of, sort of, make me want to go back to work. It’s not that I don’t WANT to be with my children (cue guilt for even having to write that), and it’s not like I’m DYING to be at my job (no offense, colleagues) – but going to work would force me out of the drabness that surrounds a stay-at-home parent. And we do get out of the house every day, even if for just a walk. But one hour away and at a playgroup doesn’t change the fact that I’m, by myself, taking care of two babies for around 10 hours a day. That one hour of socialization (or half hour, at the library sing-along), doesn’t change the fact that when we get home, I’m back on super-duty. It’s just so exhausting – starting from 6:00 am when we are all up until they go to bed at 7:00 pm. So going to work would allow me to step out of that realm for most of my day. But see – that’s also the downside of going to work. I don’t WANT to be away from the babies, I just want some breaks in my day.

I give major props to the stay-at-home-parent who is permanently in that position. Do you ever change out of sweatpants? Put on makeup? Work on yourself when you’re staying at home? I can’t seem to do it – we have started a little short jog with the jogging stroller in the mornings, so that’s good for me I guess. I don’t particularly FIT into my old, nicer clothes, so yes, I’ve been in sweatpants for let’s see – oh, about a year and a half.

So it’s a challenge. Today, I didn’t really feel like the parent as much as the nanny – just passing the hours. And that’s sad. Here’s hoping to tomorrow being a better day.

On a happier note, I’m finally planning the babies’ first birthday party and I’m excited about it. There’s absolutely no NEED to have anything lavish, or a theme, or much more than a mid-summer BBQ. However, being at home has allowed me to tap into my creative side and I have thoroughly enjoyed finding a theme. Thank you, Pinterest and Etsy – for exposing me to the vintage ice cream shoppe idea. I am on a mission to do this on a budget, so we’ll see how “vintage” I get, but it’s a big day that’s coming up in only 2 short months. Yikes.

I also received a new camera lens and wow, what a difference. Taking a picture now lets the subject really stand out and pop, as it blurs out the background. Do nannies take pictures for you while you go to work??

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C sees the camera come out and it’s instant smiles and holding poses. Much appreciated. B – not so much. It’s song and dance time until he smiles, or at least looks your way.

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And a few together, because I can’t resist.

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12 thoughts on “Meltdown.

  1. robin says:

    Your photos are adorable. 😀

    I go in and out of phases of feeling like the nanny, desperately wishing to go back to work. I just went through 3 weeks of feeling like utter crap and crying a lot and so much guilt for not wanting to be with the kids all the time but ugh. I am alone from 8:15am (when my husband goes to work) until 7:30pm (when they go to bed), so about 11 hours of solo duty. And the play groups and the singalongs and all that just don’t count anymore because I spend the whole time with the kids, my interaction with the parents is so limited – sometimes if I’m lucky I’ll talk to them on the way out to the parking lot but only if we happen to be leaving at the same time.

    Half the time I do not like being a stay at home parent. The other half of the time I realize how lucky I am to be here for all the things that a working parent doesn’t necessarily get to see.

    I wish I had any answers or solutions or suggestions but I am still struggling with this. This week has been better after a lot of crying last week and a Sunday to myself. I am also re-committing to my diet (starting with a goal of being strict for 5 days, I am on day 3, going well) and also starting exercising and art making again … hoping to at least feel good physically, and hoping that translates to mentally. I also got some nice bedtime herbal teas to help me sleep more soundly, and am caffeinating myself more during the day, really hoping to be more present and less grouchy. Ugh the last 2 months I have felt like I am constantly grouchy with the kids!

    But the thing I remind myself over and over is that I AM NOT THE NANNY. And neither are you. These children were INSIDE OF YOUR BODY. Remember that!

    Re: the screaming. This phase is what Banana was in btw and the only thing I could do was work through it. She hated rolling practice, tummy time, etc, and screamed .. but you know what, he’s going to scream anyway, right? So just do it. You know that once he is mobile he will stop screaming. I promise it will be better once he starts moving on his own. I used netflix on the ipad to get her to stay in tummy time longer (hello elmo). Push through it, teach him how to move. You can do it!!!!!!!

    • robin says:

      (PS I know that kids that come into people’s lives who were not inside their bodies are every much their children, it’s just that this is the thought that keeps me going some days when I feel more like a nanny and less like a mom)

      • futuresoccermom says:

        Thank you, thank you for your comments. Much appreciated. Yeah, you hit the nail on the head. I do feel SO very lucky to be able to do this. So grateful – and I AM going back to work, and never again will I have this opportunity. But it doesn’t mean I’m not totally exhausted and ready for a break (or ten) during a non-stop ten hour day. And you’re the same with your 11 hour days! Yikes! And thank you for the ideas (maybe some elmo is in my future) – I have no doubt that you’re right . When he can cruise around, he’ll be a happy boy. I really do appreciate your support!!

  2. livinginthedeepend says:

    What adorable little ones you have! I feel the same way so often with my girls–some days I just really want a job so I can have some adult conversation and get to use a different part of my brain. I even think I’d be a more patient and better mom in some ways! Then I start to think about how much I love those days when we can sleep in or how when one of the kids is sick I don’t have to use sick days or scramble around and then I remember why I really do want to be home.
    Hang in there, mama! Fussy twins are so hard! Maybe it’s teeth? I hope you can find the little things during the day that will help you keep your sanity. 🙂 Great post!

    • futuresoccermom says:

      Thank you so much! This was just one of those days, I guess. Most days, I am thoroughly appreciative of my time off from work for the time being. I’m so lucky to be able to stay home right now!

  3. waitingonaangel says:

    I think, once again, I could have written the same post about my twins. Nolan is at the screaming phase too-he has started crawling but hates all things laying flat and being restrained, and gets frustrated b/c he probably knows what he wants but can’t tell me!
    I’ve been back at work since Sept, and while I miss the babies every day, there is something awesome about getting to be “Amanda” instead of mom while I’m at work. And having that separation really helps me treasure the time we are together, instead of just trying to get through it. And yes-our nanny sends me pictures all day!

    • futuresoccermom says:

      That’s it! I know I’ll be so upset when I go back to work but at the same time, coming home to them will be so sweet. Glad your nanny takes pics – mine doesn’t know what’s she’s gotten herself into!

  4. randomsqueaks says:

    Love the pictures! I haven’t played with my camera (new when my babies were born) as much as I thought I would. Might have something to do with the babies stopping whatever cuteness I’m trying to record and staring at my camera/video camera/cell phone. Sigh.
    Totally get the screaming though. I confess that I yelled at my twins this morning because they were having meltdowns and, surprise, they didn’t stop yelling! Sigh again.

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