Tuesday, October 28, 2008

More Than This


I just snuck (sneaked? I like snuck better, so there) out of my sleeping (finally!) son's room where I was cuddled on the floor with his breath on my face. How is it that mere moments ago I was nursing a grudge (nothin' else to nurse around here - everyone is weaned) and now my guts are bursting with joy? Could it be only an hour ago I contemplated locking my bedroom door and crying for the rest of the day (interspersed with throwing things through my windows, of course) while my children ran amok? Funny things, these kids. Try as I might to dislike them, somehow they always manage to weasle their way back into my good graces.

Maybe I'm just getting soft (insert any and all fat jokes here) in my old age. Rumor has it that once upon a time I was quite efficient at taking offense and keeping it as my well-groomed pet - the only pet I have ever kept alive for longer than a month! And now what? One sly smile, one "Sowee, Mom", one silly antic and all is forgiven? What has happened to me?

Weak! That's what I am. My former self would have required some recompense (sounds nicer than revenge, but it's not) for my suffering:
twelve trips to your room to firmly replant you in bed = "NO!" to all requests for one day
or
sixty thousand tantrums in exactly 42.5 minutes = I make you sit at the table and watch me savor every tiny crumb of the last cookie...and then stick out my tongue
I was creative. I would have come up with something. But now! Now I just threaten thisandthat, and before I even get to the punch line I am trying so hard not to giggle that I just give up and get on with the next threat because sure as I'm wearing pink and purple eyeshadow today (weird mood) someone has done something naughty in that small window of time.

I think God knew parents would have moments of insanity that make it hard to keep from strangling children. After all, we ARE bigger and stronger, which sometimes seems to be our only advantage. Maybe (and I use the term loosely) He has felt, first hand, the frustration of telling a child again and again, only to have them still disobey. He is bigger and stronger, and can force us, but He doesn't...at least not in anger. I would like to propose that He grants each child one fail-proof line of defense against the wrath of a sleep-deprived mother, and that is charm. I dare you, dear reader, to look upon the smiling face of your naked, ink-covered toddler and do anything more than stifle a laugh. To watch your baby sleep after hours of battling and crying and screaming (on both sides) without tender feelings. Have you ever noticed that every time your little mr. (or miss) saunters into the room, you find yourself smiling or chuckling? It's a miracle I tell you.

And it just might be the one saving grace that allows my children to survive into adulthood.

7 comments:

sharlee said...

Boy do I feel like a LUMP. I am sleep deprived--have been for years, but especially this week as Emmett has been up all night every night coughing his lungs up and I must admit, this morning there were absolutely no tender feelings--just grouchy ones....until later when, after his class came on the bus to kidnap him for a Halloween Carnival at the High School, I saw how absolutely THRILLED he was to go with his class, even though he was so sick, and how they cheered for him when he got on the bus....he is so sweet (and so is his teacher for giving me a break). The poor boy wasn't trying to ruin my day, he just can't stop coughing. Anyway, glad you've had a change of heart. It was so fun to read (both times). You need to submit it somewhere for publishing--maybe in your book.

The Orton Family said...

Oh, Andrea you've done it again- said so eloquently what all us mothers feel but don't know exactly how to say it. I just want to say that whenever I see that you have a new post I get so excited. Just think how much more excited I'd be if I could just pick up a book full of Andreaisms. Wouldn't that be fun for all?!

Emily said...

Yes, looking at your sleeping child is like a magic eraser for a day's worth of tantrums, talking back, squabbles & messes.

Christy said...

I am glad that you are still blogging...I haven't had much desire to lately, but I have had some built up frustrations about a few things that I might have to release here soon!!! I love reading your blog and I also get excited whenever you post a new one! Did you ever submit one of your blog post(s) to that story thing a while back?? (I forgot what it was called..)

Oh and about our family pics we had taken...Jared Gaurdipee took them, do you know him? He charged us $100 and we got a CD of most of them that he had cropped and fixed up. We haven't gotten the prints yet we were promised though, I am still waiting for them. The picture where we are in the tunnel was over by Century High School under the highway. If you are in Utah anytime soon I have a friend that takes pics and she is amazing! So if you are ever headed to Utah I would recommend her! Her name is Nicole Leavitt if you ever wanted to check her blog/photography blog out.

haha, here I go again... writing my own blog post on yours! Sorry! ;)

Amber said...

Blasted Google Reader. It failed to tell me you had a new blog. GRRR! Obviously our feeling have been in sync lately as my last blog revealed. The love/hate (okay not hate just strong annoyance!) thing is alive and kicking at our house most days. Of course, you put it much more eloquently than I! I am glad I trudged over to your actual blog or I may never have devoured this delightful little nugget. Fancy smancy technology and it doesn't even get the job done. I'm writing the Google Reader high up people a complaint letter because apparently your blog was not the only one they failed to share with me!

Lena said...

Loved it! It must be the miracle of time and motherhood combined. I suppose that the faster we learn the futileness of force, the better mothers we will be!

Amber said...

Funny you should mention the red roses thing. I am VERY against roses period. My husband know I like exotic flowers the best (birds of paradise are my all-time favs) and even wild flowers, but I guess the selection was next to nothing, so he did good with the color! And I am glad our husbands are in sync, because it seems like our very similar lives have been very similarly crazy (typical) lately!