Sometimes I wish I was carrying a "mommy cam" so I could show everyone just exactly what my days are like. At one point today I thought Ben's mouth was bleeding, but it turned out to be red playdough. Anyone out there who has kids knows that every now and then you encounter a rough day. My rough days are unfortunately complicated by Ben's delays and wiggly nuances.
Today, Sarah had another birthday party to attend...two hours at an indoor jumping/bouncing playground. I should mention, my husband has been traveling for seven days now, and he was supposed to be back tonight. I was so excited to see him and was counting the hours...until he called today to say he'd be a few more days. I was disappointed, but I reminded myself to stay positive and stay in the moment... blah blah blah.... I was still disappointed.
Let's fast forward to the second hour of today's birthday party.... Sarah is wound up and squealing that high pitched laughter that only 3 year old girls and dogs can hear. Ben has had enough of the whole thing. Cranky, his only real method of protest is crying and jerking himself backward as hard as he can. He will not tolerate the stroller. He will only slightly tolerate me holding him.
Now it's time for cake and ice cream. Sarah is thrilled, and proceeds to get totally hopped up on sugar. Next, she is given a helium-filled balloon. With this, she has reached a state of total bliss. She and her little friends are bopping their balloons all around the room. Just then, I notice her doing the pee pee dance. It's the unmistakable holding of the crotch while bouncing back and forth from foot to foot. While holding cranky Ben, I take her by the hand to take a potty break. However, instead of walking along with me, she breaks free and goes running around the place like a cheetah on crack. She is feeling quite proud of her escape until.... the unthinkable.... she loses her balloon.
Sarah collapses to the ground in total despair. Great sobs. Lots of tears. I give her a hug and then continue to lead her to the potty. Reluctently, and still crying, Sarah goes into the stall with Ben and me. She can NOT stop crying. Wailing is more like it. Others in the restroom are starting to comment, and I'm certain that they believe I'm trying to chop her feet off with a dull knife. I try all my great Montessori mommy tricks. I calmly say, "I understand you're sad, Honey. Let's try to take some deep breaths." No luck. More crying, and then she says the worst four words she could say today (of all days)... "I want my Daddy." I wanted to just sit down and sob too. I wanted her daddy also.... Mostly at that moment I wanted him to be in that nasty stall instead of me. I had to internally censor all the words that were now coming to my mind....
Finally, after ten minutes -that's right, TEN MINUTES - Sarah calms down enough that she can actually pee. In the midst of her meltdown she has taken off her pants and underwear and kicked them across the stall. She now sits down on the dirty floor to put her clothes back on. Except... she was also given a long necklace as a party favor, and she has accidentally put her leg through the necklace, so she cannot pull her pants all the way up. She has to take everything back off and start over. I am now so hot and so tired of fighting to hold on to jerky, squirmy, cranky Ben that I seriously consider just grabbing her and running out of the building, letting her moon everyone in our path. Ugh.
We finally did get out of there, (yes, with Sarah's clothes on) and I'm thankful to be home now with a nice glass of Cabernet. Zen philosophy does help me cope with Ben's medical issues. I can focus on my breathing and find a state of calm and peace in almost any situation. However, for Sarah's meltdowns, it turns out I need to add some red wine.
Cheers. Here's to an easier day tomorrow....