Sometimes I'm just tired...

on Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Sometimes I’m just tired.

Do you have any idea how much time I spend defending the actions of my children? And one of them isn’t even out of diapers! The two little angels who came into this world with unblemished character are suddenly on the post offices most wanted list…and they haven’t quite reached the ages of 4 and 2.

Did I put them there?

When they don’t say hi correctly or at all….when they won’t acknowledge someone…when they won’t listen……when they throw sand….when they take the only ball to play with and run with it….when they talk back….when they have a pout…when they have a tantrum…when they won’t get on the phone and say hello…when they won’t get off the phone and stop talking…when they are generally rude…heck…even when they are teasing and laughing….I’m defending them. Or am I condemning them? “They are little!” “ It’s developmental!” “They are learning!” “They didn’t get enough sleep!” “They got too much sleep!” “I’m sorry. I’m sorry. I’m sorry.” (insert scream here)

What the heck am I apologizing for?

Maybe it’s me and not the children who is the issue. Maybe it’s my expectations of who they should be or what I believe my social group expects them to be.

Here’s the truth: I don’t judge other peoples kids with the same rules I condemn my children. When someone else’s kid is acting out….my reaction is relief that it’s not my child and my conclusion is that it’s one of the issues I noted above. Not a big deal. But when my child throws down….well…suddenly the world is coming to an end and I don’t let the situation drop without a thorough verbal lesson to which my almost 4 year old replies in one of the next several ways:

a.) “Mama, are you done talking yet?”
b.) Putting himself in time out.
c.) Yelling back at me to explain his side of the situation or….
d.) and kids, this is the most terrifying….a smile …the smile that tells me that he’s already picking out the corrupt nursing home he is going to put me in someday.

Next…the battle to get the child to do THE RIGHT THING….followed by a profuse apology to the possibly injured/annoyed/put-out/upset/uninterested party and the all time stupidest question: Is he/she that bad? Am I raising a serial killer? (insert louder scream here…much more shrill and demonic)

All of this is closely followed by a summit meeting by mom and dad to re-evaluate the discipline/raising plan of the kids and regroup in order to raise good Christian human beings who will give joy and take joy in life.

It’s exhausting and I’m tired of being tired.

In my lucid moments I know this: I’m helping to raise two of the most intelligent, enlightened, intriguingly unique individuals I’ve ever met and I’m overjoyed. I’m thankful. These two children are funny, bright and happy at least 70 percent of the time. I know that these times are some of the best we will have enjoying the development of our pair of human beings. And in my most lucid moments I thank God for entrusting these little people to us and hope that we can meet His expectations for raising them.

I’m going to stop apologizing. (at least try)