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March 19, 2011

I'll never understand any of this


Mads and I have really been at odds lately, for the first time in our little life together. It's put me off-kilter.

We have a funny sort of relationship, the two of us. It's a hard thing to put into words. I very clearly remember the day she turned one month old: We sat together in utter misery together at my parents' house in the early hours of the morning. She was wailing, which wasn't uncommon, and I was settling into a sinkhole of depression. To be more specific, I was thinking about nice it must feel to drown. I looked over at her in her blue bouncy chair and she stopped crying and smiled her first ever smile. Completely out of the blue, right at me. Since then, through whatever else, we've been on the same side.

Until now.

It hasn't exactly been smooth sailing to this point, but I've always felt like I know how to talk to her, like I really understand her. But lately... I just don't. Suddenly absolutely everything is a battle. Eating, sleeping, getting dressed, going out, staying in - it's all become a gigantic ordeal. It's like we've regressed three years, only now the resistance comes complete with eye rolls and dirty looks. Suddenly, it seems, I'm just "so boooring." And to be honest, she's no picnic either.

As always, the non-existant motherhood manual is no help at all on this one so I've been winging it, employing a possibly toxic combination of bribery, threats and talkings-to. All of which have of course gone ignored. 

And then one day this week, as I sat daydreaming about enlisting her in a Maury Pauvich-style bootcamp, the whole thing disappeared as suddenly as it had arrived. She was my sweet Mads, with her pleases and thank yous, her silly grins and those hugs that squeeze my heart until it just about busts. As soon as it came it was gone.

And all I'm left with is that old aching gratitude, and this far-off feeling that the only thing I will ever know is that I don't know anything at all.

Welcome to motherhood.

March 19, 2011 | Permalink


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the ups & downs, the mood-swings, the sweet things....aren't they exhausting?! how'd our parents raise 3 of us?!!! sometimes i can barely deal with the 2 i've got! haha!

Posted by: brandee | Mar 20, 2011 10:46:52 AM

What helps me is watching her sleep- or cuddling with her while she sleeps, actually. She's only 8 months but she's really trying my patience. Being such a little pain in the ass. When she's in her playpen or crib and doesn't want to be there? SCREAMS. Those nights where she will only sleep peacefully in our bed instead of in her fracking crib? For her, apparently, growing autonomy comes with brattiness. But then I put her to sleep (sometimes after her screaming for a while) and when she finally relinquishes and turns her face toward my elbow and goes limp, the frustration sort of magically dissipates. Those little toes and those beautiful eyelashes and that sweet nose- no matter how much she's pissed me off that day, I can't help but kiss her and cuddle her like a doofus. It gets us ready for the next day of wailing. ;)

Posted by: Pennie | Mar 22, 2011 2:07:24 PM

Oh gosh, I've been having some moments like this with Gretchen lately... everything really is a battle, but the more I try to perfect things the harder it is. Trying to let go over here, but it's tough <3
Lots of love!

Posted by: Desiree Fawn | Apr 4, 2011 8:17:42 AM

Sleeping children are perfect, no? And the rest of the time?

Ah well, we've passed from small kidness to 7! 7! A "Kid", no longer a "little kid"!

And I'd be really happy to hear more of this sort of thing "I'm 7 now. I can do it all by myself". Sigh. I do not remember begging my parents to stay with me while I fell asleep EVERY SINGLE NIGHT. Nor having to be reminded with every mouthful to chew with mouth closed. I want a conversation with her, not to be the endless reminder aka nag police.

Posted by: Curious | Aug 23, 2011 4:39:25 AM

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"Having a two-year-old is like having a blender that you don't have the top for." ~Jerry Seinfeld.

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