Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Is the doctor in?

This has been a night of ups and downs and twists and turns. In other words, it was bedtime and Brian was gone. Worse yet, it was a bath night. And on top of that, I had to enforce the consequence from last night's bedtime...7:30 bedtime for the boys.
Of course they weren't happy with that move. Joshua argued that he didn't do anything wrong last night. When I reminded him of the truth he said he had stopped before I told him he was going to have an early bedtime tonight. (His sense of reality is soooo in his own favor!) Matthew was ranting about how unfair it is that adults get to make up all the rules and "boss kids around." He said he wants to be the grown up and make the rules the way he wants them. And, yes, sometimes I'd like to be the kid again. I won't bore you with all the details. I think you have a good enough picture here.
I tried to love them through this bedtime routine. I did sing for them. I did pray for them. And I did stand in their doorway, feeling like the bully they were calling me, playing guard so they would be quiet. As I stood there I reminded myself how much I don't want to wish these days away.
Yes. I am looking forward to the time when they'll get themselves ready for bed completely, and there will be no arguing or fighting to end the day. I hope they'll still want me to come into their room and kiss them and pray for them, and maybe even sing to them. (Wondering if they'll still have their favorite songs, or if that'll change.) I'm looking forward to that peace, but I don't want to live my life waiting for that day.
So as I stood guard in the doorway, my heart was heavy as I wondered how to cherish these times that are so difficult. Have you been there?
Once the boys were "settled" I got Elizabeth going on her bedtime routine. In the middle of her activity, Joshua called me into his room. "Mom, I'm sorry for yelling at you." "I love you, Joshua. I'm sorry for yelling at you, too." One sentence from that boy can lift my spirits and make me forget being upset with him.
Then I returned to Elizabeth and got her settled. With Elizabeth in bed I went to look in on the boys. Joshua was standing at his desk. (gasp! What was he doing out of bed??? I had been so clear that he was to stay in bed and remain quiet!) Then he walked over to me and gave me a piece of paper which says, I love you Mom! How does he do that??? Not half an hour earlier he was ranting and raving about how unfair I am - that I'm a bully. (He didn't hand out the Meanest Mom in the World award, though I was anticipating it.) And suddenly he's warming my heart. Grab this moment, Karen. Cherish it!!!
And so my evening went. One moment trying to keep from exploding, the other on the verge of melting. Even in the process of writing this post I have been interrupted about ten times for various complaints and problems. A couple of times for a random hug, kiss, and I love you, too.

So this is motherhood. It isn't easy, but I choose to cherish it. God has seen fit to put me here and He has never done anything wrong. When I'm about to explode, I need to remember that truth. And when I'm about to melt, I need to push the record button in my memory and cherish that moment.

OK, therapy session over. Thanks. I feel better!

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JennaG said...

It is amazing how kids can take us from one extreme to the other--and so quickly too! I don't know if that will ever end. Glad your evening ended on a nice note--and not a sour one.

Heather @ Desperately Seeking Sanity said...

Samara (age 7) does the exact same thing... and I always feel so bad because our tiffs seem to come as she's going to bed or walking out the door for school...

But my last letter said she was sorry for treating me like dog crap... i'll cherish it forever... :)

amy said...

I will be entering Motherhood in the next 2 years and its nice to read honest blogging entries

massagebuff said...

wow! I needed to hear that today. I am currently writing a presentation for my Mother's day service at church on keeping the faith that our kids will grow up to be Godly.
There must have been something in the air last night because my 5 year old and my 2.5 year old sons decided to overturn every toy in the playroom, rip the sheets off of their beds, and whoop call out the windows to the whole neighborhood all while being in time out on their beds :)
Needless to say, it was a little difficult to sit down with my Bible and find reasons why I love being a mother while my husband was on his way out the door to praise band practice and my 6 month old son was trying to cry himself to sleep for the night.
Amazingly, I got the whole thing written, and its funny to boot.

Irritable Mother said...

Jenna ~ My mom tells me it NEVER ends. There's hope for ya! *wink*

Heather ~ I've got to know, did you frame that letter? I wonder what was really going through Samara's mind when she wrote that letter. I'm guessing she REALLY was feeling remorseful. They aren't ALWAYS selfish and insensitive, are they...

Amy ~ Thanks for visiting. And welcome (in advance) to the world of mothering.

Massagebuff ~ I feel your pain!!! LOL
I love the confidence that God is still good even in the middle of our trying times. Sometimes that Truth is the ONLY thing that keeps me going through the day.

annie said...

I've been having some fun conversations with my oldest, Amanda. She is 16 and wondering why she has to do what we tell her. She is close to perfect, national honor society, good girl, etc. but, It is so hard to make her understand that rules are rules and she must follow them. She cannot just go where she wants when she wants, she's not ready for that freedom. I wish I could tell you it gets easier with age, but it just gets different. Even with her though, it is those moments of sweetness that get me through the bumps...