I am so completely exhausted right now and all I want to do is go to bed, but I am afraid if I don’t type an entry now, it will be weeks before I get another chance. You’d think my lack of posts is because I’ve been working a lot. Ha, Nope! In fact, I am not working at all right now No Job = Bad News #1. Although by choice, it is not a good thing. I really didn’t WANT to stop working for Holly (or at least stop watching her kids), and I surely didn’t WANT to put us in a position where I am not making any money, but it was something that had been building and building and last Wed, upset at a lot of things with the situation, impulsively, I quit. Me not working for her anymore really IS the best thing, but it has created a lot of stress for Mike and I and put us in a bit of a financial bind. I’ve spent a week and a half sending out resume after resume (probably 50+) and have only had a handful of replies. There are a few great potentials, and I have a few leads, but so far nothing firm. Besides trying to find a job, I’ve been doing my best to constantly entertain a very confused Mikey. He is trying to figure out why he is home with Mommyall day everyday. Naturally, this is unusual for him as he had been with Mike’s Mom the majority of every day that I worked and now that he has Mommy all to himself, he literally will not leave my side. I can barely fix a cup of coffee, fold a load of laundry or even pee without him wanting me to hold him. Clingy baby = Bad News # 2. He even wants me to nap with him (since he had gotten used to Mike’s Mom laying with him at nap time until he fell asleep), so job hunting has been reserved for the evenings or when Mike’s Mom so graciously takes Mikey for a few hours. Between off duty (which fortunately is $ earned in addition to his salary, and the more he works, the more he makes), meetings in the evenings and weekends (which he does not earn extra money for, but extra time off- when his schedule allows), Mike has also been working like a maniac (LITERALLY). He is home to sleep (many nights not nearly enough) and that’s about it lately. Us missing Daddy = Bad News # 3. BUT, Good News #1 is that there has been a lot of off duty available this month (some months there is not and all he works is the church- and we are LUCKY he was requested by them to work ALL of their services and can count on that money) which is making up a good portion of what we are missing with me not working.
Baseball, yes…..Good News # 2! Braeden’s baseball games have started and are a fantastic way to ease stress. Braeden is doing great (3 singles, 1 strike out- but the strikeout included him hitting 4 fouls and simply missing the last pitch), his team is doing great (2 wins 1 loss, 2 rain-outs). The game they lost was to the BEST team in the league whom I am certain are fed steroids before the game because they are HUGE and can HIT THE BALL! They were no better at fielding, which at least gave us a chance, but it was still a tough loss (10-0). Braeden’s coach continues to amaze us! He has little ball shaped coasters with each players name on it that he places on the bench (so they sit in the right order), he gives out stickers at the end of each game for the players to put on their helmets (a bat sticker if they had a good hit, a glove sticker if they made a good play, a sticker of a pair of running shoes if they hustled etc.), printed a huge sticker of each players name for the back of their helmets, and he even made laminated cards with each players name and their jersey number so that when they are up to bat and we can’t see their faces under their helmets, we know who to cheer for. For a perfectionist, OCD Mom like me, this is the “Ritz” of baseball coaches Braeden has been playing in-field- (last year he played outfield and couldn’t even catch the ball) 2nd base, short-stop or pitcher (although the coach pitches the ball through a machine, so he doesn’t actually pitch, but fields for that position since the coach can not). He is throwing and catching exceptionally well and is really focusing and trying hard, and having FUN. We are SO proud of him. Did I mention before that I LOVE baseball?
Before Braeden’s first game of the season-
Bad News # 4- Mikey has been SO bad! We are back to being unable to take him anywhere. We used to be able to take him anywhere except restaurants, then he got better and we were even able to take him there. Now, its a struggle no matter where we go. I am guessing the Terrible Two’s are in full swing (he will be 2 in less than a month). He will not sit in the buggy at any store, and when he walks, he has to touch everything he sees, and wants to explore things. Today at Walmart he was peeling the labels off the orange juice. He refuses to hold our hand in parking lots and yells “WALK!” if we try and carry him. When he doesn’t get his way, he will hit, pinch, kick or scream at the top of his lungs. The screaming I can take- I look directly at him and tell him he can scream if he wants, I do not care and it does not bother me. The physical lashing out, I can NOT take. I simply will not tolerate a child acting out aggressively and he has to understand NOW that it is not acceptable! When we are at home, I can correct his negative behavior by putting him in time out, but the majority of this behavior occurs while we are either getting in the car (he doesn’t like being buckled) or out in public. Hitting his hand (or bottom) doesn’t work (and I don’t like doing it anyway). He will simply laugh, or scream (and by scream I do not mean “cry”). We may have had a breakthrough tonight though. We were at Walmart (a little too close to bedtime) and Mikey was being unmanageable. Braeden was so helpful and patient and I was literally at my witt’s end, about to run out of the store, get in my car and head to the Bahamas and not look back! I was SO mad and frustrated and overwhelmed and oh, did I say mad? Not to mention what all the other Mother’s in the store must have been thinking. These are the Mom’s I used to look at and think, “can’t you control your own kids?” When we got home, I parked the car, took my purse and Mikey out (leaving all groceries in the car) and put Mikey directly in bed. He knew immediately that he was in trouble as this obviously is not his usual “night night” routine. He screamed and cried for about 15 minutes. Finally I heard him walk out of his room (Braeden had opened the door to get his pajamas) sobbing and saying, “Sorry, Mama” and “Bad” over and over. God DOES know what he’s doing and he will NEVER give us more than we can handle. I picked him up, told him it was OK, and that he needed to act better next time. I brought him back to his bed, snuggled him, and he went right to sleep. 2 boys asleep at 7:30 pm after a LONG day = Good News #3
Not too many moments like this-
Good News #4 Braeden is SUCH an amazing big brother and role model. Cute little story (cute now, but wasn’t cute at the time). The other night, the boys were in the bathroom brushing their teeth alone (BAD idea) as I put away the dishes. They were taking a long time and I heard a lot of fussing. When I went in there, I saw mouth wash all over the white bathroom rug, tooth paste everywhere and the boys were bickering back and forth (Mikey wanted more toothpaste and Braeden told him no). I was irritated to say the least, but mostly upset that Braeden spilled the mouthwash on the rug (which was an accident and didn’t warrant me getting mad about). I yelled a bit and told them, “NO STORY tonight! ” Braeden got very upset, said he was sorry and that he would cooperate and could he PLEASE have a story. Mikey got MAD, put his fingers in his mouth and made himself PUKE! Imagine my fury as now there was not only pink mouthwash all over the bathroom, but puke too! Braeden took one look at my face (before I could even say anything), grabbed Mikey and said, “Come on, we better get in bed. We’re REALLY not getting a story now! ” I laugh as I type. Lesson learned- Don’t cry over spilled mouth wash or your toddler’s self induced puke!
A little bit of just NEWS-
Mikey is saying, ”Why?” to everything. We can ask him if he wants some milk and he will say, ”why?” ”Time for bed Mikey.” “Why?” “Braeden’s at school.” ”Why?” And of course when I ask HIM to tell ME ”Why?” he says, “why?”
Braeden is suddenly completely afraid of going to sleep. He will cry and shake and say he is scared. We have talked to him so much about it all, but can’t seem to figure out what’s going on. I am not sure he even knows. I DO know that he is resembling how I was as a child VERY much. I would check, and re-check under my bed, whether the doors were locked (you thought I was kidding about being OCD) and went to bed almost every night totally scared. Many nights I slept with my sister in the basement (on the floor) rather than in my bed. It all started about Braeden’s age. If anyone has ANY suggestions please please e-mail me. It has become a huge nightly interruption and we are just lost at what to do. Mike and I want so much to say, “OK, just sleep with us” but know that’s not the right thing nor will it resolve the underlying issue. We are only a few more nights away from calling his pediatrician. Right now he is in Mikey’s bed with him because I was just TOO tired to deal with it on my own tonight (Mike is working) and Braeden was so upset. He is such a good kid and is truly so obedient with everything. I can see it in his eyes and all over him that he is TRULY bothered by something. My heart is absolutely breaking. We’ve tried everything- leaving lights on, checking his room for him, having multiple conversations, digging deep to see if he is emotionally upset about something, and have gotten no where. He is completely normal and himself all day long, and only has issues at night. He knows it frustrates Mike and I (both him not going to sleep and us not knowing how to help him), and ordinarily would correct any behavior he knows is displeasing, but he is genuinely traumatized at night and literally BEGS and pleads for me to help him. I would move heaven and earth for that little guy. I just truly have NO CLUE what to do!
Well, I am not sure what the tally was of good news to bad, but I’ll conclude tonight’s posting with good news, or at least cute news- Mikey has started saying “Awesome!” all the time. Yeah, despite the bad news that always seems to be right there next to the good news, life is pretty AWESOME- especially since its been 80+ degrees all week and the pool is OFFICIALLY warm enough to swim in. Can you guess what we’re doing tomorrow?
Mikey thinks HE and THIS is AWESOME!
PS. I do have to let the world know just how much I LOVE my sister. I am not sure how how I ever survived so many years without talking to her every day (now that we do). She has been an especially BIG motivator and friend, giving me exactly the encouragement I SO need right now. Love Love Love Lisa!
When Mikey looks at this picture 20 years from now and is appalled, I will have to remind him that he kept saying, “On” when we were in the store contemplating whether or not we should buy it. He is laughing so hard because Mike and I couldn’t stop laughing. He looks so darn cute!
Now he is laughing because he was slick and grabbed the basket from Braeden! Braeden says, “Excuse me!?”
Despite the fact that Braeden has been gone since last Friday, we have had a really good week. I worked Monday, Tues and a half day on Wed and have Thurs-Sun OFF (Holly and her family went to NC for a long weekend). I’ve totally enjoyed spending time with Mike (who was off both yesterday AND today- UNHEARD of in his work-world as of lately) and Mikey. Oh our sweet, sweet Mikey! Lately, Mike and I have looked at one another and thought, “who IS this kid?” We’ve always loved him beyond words, but he was just a little difficult for awhile. Difficult is not even a word I would think of when describing his current behavior. He listens SO well, says please before he wants something (without us even reminding him). In fact, this morning he was sitting on the bathroom floor as I was getting ready and he opened the cabinet and immediately looked at me (to be sure he was not in trouble for opening it), pointed to the container with my hair ties and said, “peez?” He was asking permission before getting into them (just a few months ago, he would open the cabinet and throw all of the hair ties EVEN if I’d already told him NO NO). When he was all done, he said, “clean up” and put them all back, (again, just months ago, I would chase him around the house to get him to come back and clean up a mess he’d made). We used to joke and call him the “bad child” (not in front of him of course and certainly not seriously), but I can honestly say that I think he is truly EASIER than most children are at almost 2 years old. When he wants something that he is not going to get, or gets upset over having to leave somewhere or give something up (typical issues that normally result in fits for toddlers), we are actually able to reason with him. We can explain the situation and he will respond, “Oh Tay Mama” and the incident is OVER! Wow! He will say sorry when he has done something wrong and truly does not like to be in trouble. He gets this certain, ADORABLE look on his face when he has done something wrong and tries to immediately correct himself. When he is yelled at, he trembles and his feelings truly get hurt (its almost heartbreaking). All I can say is THANK YOU GOD! We never imagined things would really truly get easier and had almost accepted the fact that everything would just be a little harder with Mikey than it was with Braeden. I am slowly letting go of that concept He is eating great (although it still takes him a long time to chew so during “rushed” times we still feed him baby food) he is loving, snuggly, filled with hugs and kisses, helpful, obedient and SO MUCH FUN! He wants to be right by us always. This is especially enjoyable since Braeden is and always has been very independent. Mikey wants to help and be a part of everything. I just never imagined loving my children THIS much! Maybe we HAVE done something right after all!
So, its Friday night and Mike is working and Mikey is asleep (btw, he hops right into his big boy bed without a fuss and is asleep within minutes). I am looking forward to a quiet night. I have recently joined Facebook and am a little obsessed. Its SO neat to see pictures of people I haven’t spoken to in years and read all about their lives. Its fun becoming reconnected. Pretty pathetic that being home on a Friday night playing on the computer actually EXCITES me.
Speaking of exciting, I saw the most INCREDIBLE play this week at our church. Very much life changing- totally puts things in perspective. Go to thethorn.net for details. The church had 9 shows and every show was SOLD OUT (over 1000 tickets each show). I actually didn’t even have a ticket, but because Mike works all the off duty work at the church and is a “VIP” there because of that, he was able to find an extra ticket. I am SO glad he did, and I had a great seat too.
So, other than bunnies (to include wearing the suit), Mikey is also in love with Thomas the Train lately. He calls any of the trains “Tommy.” He is also in love with “money.” I am certain he does not understand what money is all about (or we are truly in trouble), but loves holding coins and hearing the clitter clatter they make in his pocket. Fortunately (for now) he has no idea the difference between pennies, nickles, dimes and quarters and he could care less about dollar bills. We give him a lot of pennies. He is also itching to get into the pool and “wim.” We pass it all the time in the complex and he gets a little irritated that we have not gone in yet. The weather is perfect for swimming, but with the pools not being heated the way they are at my parents in FL, the water is WAY too cold. Another month or so and we will be in business. Speaking of my parents, when my Dad came in town last week to get Braeden and bring him to Aaron’s parents, the first thing Mikey said when my Dad lifted him up for a hug was, “Golf Cart!” He is forever associating things with people and doesn’t forget a thing!
I’ll have some updates on Braeden when he gets home. He will be back Monday afternoon and has his first baseball game of the season Monday night- CAN’T WAIT! I am not sure who’s more excited him or me. His team name is The Bulldogs!
We hope you have a Happy Easter and remember what exactly Easter means. God is truly amazing and deserves honor and praise far more often than just on the holidays.