I have a confession....Im not enjoying my children at the minute. Its hard to admit but seriously everything I do with them feels like so much hard work lately, whether it something they want to do or something I need to do... even just getting in and out of the car!
When you have a baby I really think they should give you a basic manual on how to bring up your baby/child. I mean seriously how are you meant to know this stuff otherwise? We were the first in both of our family's to have a baby in 15 years so everyone else was rusty too, not to mention things are constantly changing and new guru books are published every month stating that they know just how not to screw up your child. Don't even start me on Gina Ford....how can anyone who hasn't even had a child give any sort of advice let alone have several books?! Its like taking driving lessons off someone who has never been in a car....I know I sound patronising and I am sorry but I don't care because it is the absolute truth. You really have no clue unless you have had kids of your own and all the emotions involved, I would go as far as to say you don't even know what life is without them. I mean were you truly grateful, as in won £100 on a scratch card happy that you had a 5 minute shower today without interruption and nothing horrible happening to your house?! I was. You know those posters that say some crap about "You cant have a rainbow without the rain" ...this was solely made for parents to realise that one day just sitting and not worrying about a single damn thing is just marvellous. I am not even talking about breast vs bottle and all that other migraine evoking bull to guilt parents and make them fight, just normal advice like good bedtimes and acceptable punishments that work for a 2yr old who cant even talk....tearing an actual chunk out of your hair in front of him I've discovered only makes him laugh.
I often ponder if being a parent is so hard because its me, in case you cant tell sarcasm is in my DNA and I'm rapidly discovering I'm not an earth mother; honestly the best part of my day is when they go to bed...how bad is that? There are people out there doing home school and shit but I am bone achingly exhausted by 3pm 24/7. I also think is it my kids?! Two boys is not for the faint hearted, I watch my friends lil girls doing loom bands, colouring in, playing Dolly's and generally sitting still for 3 minutes, so that's blatant straight away but there is also the fact that I think my kids have been made totally out of blue smarties. The things they think of and do is just stroke inducing... as you will have seen here My Crazy Kids... Everyone seems to have found it hilarious and sometime I do but when your living it...its more a laugh cry combo. I can guarantee when someone says "there is a boy right at the top of the soft play but on the OUTSIDE of it" its one of MY boys! Then I think is it maybe my friends. I try not to be a the type to compare but when I see some of them all waxing lyrical about how "5 am wake up was worth it by these treasures" or they will be "devastated when the school holidays are over" ...I want to throw up REALLY?! Total guilt trip and maybe its them that are not normal...or they have a lot of help/breaks.
Only way to keep them still.
Its also hard to know what to do for the best in terms of bringing up a child. I keep telling my husband to stop play fighting with the boys because they then fight with their friends...who even know if this is remotely true and I don't want to constantly stop them having fun....oh.my.god who am I? When the kids fall over I rarely pick them up (I've even noticed friends now quoting my "Just brush the crumbs off!" catch phrase) because I want them to be independent and not to cry over every little thing but this has resulted in two kids harder than coffin nails, absolutely cover in bruises and far too adventurous for their own good. Oscar at 1 even walked off a broken wrist! As for punishments, how do you punish someone whose only goal in life is food anyway?! When I tell older people about their antics like sneaking into the cupboard and covering them selves in hair removal crème, they say things like "He wouldn't have been able to sit down for a week".... I don't even think we are allowed to smack any more, because if your kid turns into a murderer it will be all your fault for disciplining them...
0% percent listening on 'Picking Only'
until we have paid....
until we have paid....
Anyhow I digress the point is things are totally out of control and I don't know how this all happened but somehow- The tail is wagging the dog. I have said this loads of times but going from one child to two is like going from owning a dog to running a zoo. There is no way it should work out like that but it just does, maybe I've noticed because when one child has a tantrum or says "Yuuukk I'm not eating that" its not so bad but when 2 do it at the same time your brain goes #kaboom. I woke up the other day and the husband is working away at the minute, I literally felt panicked with another week on my own stretched ahead they are 4 and 2yr old boys not OGRES, how did I get here?! I never wanted to be a hard parent or really have to BE a parent I just wanted to say "You can have an ice cream after dinner OK baby?" and hear "OK Mammy great" not "Uhhhhh arggghhh why??!! I hate this world blah blah" then follows the tantrum. Its kind of like letting a dog off the lead though and expecting it not to run away...I have realised it ain't going to happen; also dogs make great metaphors for children! I've also realised that I am treating them like little adults expecting that if I am cool with them they will be with me but they are not and not capable of these choices. I am not their friend I'm their Mother. It may be different for you or your children but for me/us (husband is in total agreement we have both just dropped the ball lately) NO more. We are tired of tantrums over most things, never listening, running away, hitting and nipping (All Oscar), not eating their meals, not doing as they are told and being crazy; they haven't even started school yet.
Standard tantrum/grumpy over...nothing!
My GG thought of an idea to keep
his hands to himself for once!
So We (mostly me) are taking back control these next few weeks are going to have an organised theme and get back the lead....see what I did there with dogs and that ha ha!
List of tasks to try and get back control:
Pinterest - Seriously this is the best thing that has ever happened to parents so many great ideas and tips in picture form so easy to process. I've started my own board with stuff like the pics below, here so please have a neb and even better follow me.
Routine - We have a basic routine wake up and go to bed, they both have always been great sleepers but we don't have a solid, lunch at 1pm, read a story before bed etc because I'm happy just to let them watch a bit TV while I load the dishwasher...and start pouring and drinking wine at the same time.
I have had this re-pinned loads already so must be good!
Food - My boys are not picky eaters but all of sudden it's "I don't like this" or I've slaved making a lovely meal and they pick a tiny bit of it. I'm pretty sure they might get scurvy soon too, So I'm going to address this somehow and cut back on the junk.
Sleep - As I said they have always been great sleepers but all of a sudden with this mad patch that's crept in they are both fighting bed time and waking up through the night. Not to mention Archie wakes up when he does and instead of drifting back off whether it is 3am or 6am he gets up goes downstairs (he can open the baby gate and cupboard locks now) helps himself to biscuits etc and then hunts around for the i pad!....we are all exhausted. So a solid bedtime and sleep routine for their ages.
I think this is a great little guide...how else do you know?
Differentiate - Between Archie and Oscar. Different ages, personality's and needs. Truly because they are 2 boys I treat them the same worse than I would identical twins duhhhh!
Discipline - Naughty step will be worn down, I've avoided this for Oscar but if he can tell me he wants sweets he is capable of knowing he has done something naughty. I have never been shy of telling my kids off but I suppose if I can get away without it I will because it feels horrible right? However I read a lovely quote the other day and it said "I love you too much to let you behave like that" so it might feel crap to punish them but it will be the greater good.
Maybe youre experiencing some of the same or have some advice please stay tuned to see what happens and get in touch. Wish me luck.