Toddlers and Frustration.

I am back again.  Here is what Miss Tessa has been up to lately…

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Playing outside a lot,

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Setting aside time to get ready in the mornings,

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Camping, playing with Kendal, and feeding a stray dog pepperonis.

Warning:  I use the word “frustrate” and its variants at least ten times in this post.  Excuse my ongoing use of the word as it has been an unnecessary theme this past week.  For the life of me I cannot come up with a better and more appropriate word…cue the broken record.  There is also no clear direction for this post either, just a lot to let go of this week and a dash of self-pity.  

Whew!  How can I possibly keep up with such a busy girl, let alone another?  I craved this kind of energy from Tessa for months, and ladies and gents it has arrived.  I am happy about it although that is not to say that when she teams up with her sister that I don’t get overwhelmed and frustrated.  I definitely do.  For example, a simple campfire or cook out with friends and family suddenly turns into an Olympic event…pull one down from standing on a flimsy lawn chair, race to save one from the fire pit, sprint to keep one from going into the lake, turn around and stop the other running toward the road.  Potty training, food throwing, diaper rash, teething, hitting, spilled milk, spilled cereal, Kendal’s ongoing and unpredictable sleep patterns, “Frozen”…Oy vey!  This goes on everyday in everything that we do so by now, I am a self proclaimed gold medalist.  Alright maybe silver-ish.  If not that, well I am certainly on the podium!

Lately I find myself walking the thin line of sheer joy and total frustration.  Joy because I have Tessa home free and doing everything that I had hoped she would do with her sister. Joy because I have the freedom to chase my little blessings around non-stop.  Frustration because I chase my little blessings around non-stop.  Frustration because I wish they would take a break once in a while.  Joy because they are best friends.  Frustration because they have an ongoing conspiracy against their parents.  Joy because they want to stay up and play together until 9:30 p.m.  Frustration because of the same.  You understand, right?

Now I understand that we chose to have two under 2.  I do not regret it one bit.  It is fun–hilarious most of the time, actually!  But it is consuming as well.  I am not saying consuming from a totally selfish standpoint, I am saying it honestly.  One day I am sure that Dan and I will look back on all of the late nights and blurry days with relief and amazement.

How do we try to balance this?  I really don’t know…but these are a few ways that help me out.

1.)  A never ending supply of coffee: to kickstart early mornings/late nights.

2.)  Room darkening blinds: for easier nap times and down time.

3.)  A GREAT daycare:  working from home is impossible with toddlers.  They burn off energy, socialize and play with friends all day long! I really do not know how our daycare ladies do it, but Lord am I thankful that they do.

4.)  TV:  When the mid-day tornado of toddlers sweeps through the house, scattering debris and toys like a natural disaster Mickey Mouse Clubhouse comes on to the rescue along with two heaping cups of pretzel sticks.

5.)  Date nights:  Between work and babies, we need them.

6.)  Phone calls to my sister:  Venting.  Ahhh… It is amazing what it does for me.  My life seems less chaotic when I hear that I am not the only one searching for the parenting life raft now and then.

7.)  Laughter:  Replace one frustrating moment with laughter instead of anger.  Voila.

8.)  Writing:  I already feel better.

My level of expertise here is low…real low.  Therefore, if you are planning on heeding any sort of advice from me in the hopes that it may help then good luck.  We are each responsible for finding freedom from frustration.  Parents, throw your hands up if you’ve been there. Yeah that’s right you have…

I get asked often, “How do you do it?”  “How do you handle raising two toddlers?”  Wine at night, warn out yoga pants, The Real Housewives series on Bravo, a few tears, a lot of sarcasm.  I don’t know.  I just do, but I have a terrible poker face.  My stressful days read easily if you see me in the midst of one.  I think those are unfair questions.  There are parents out there doing all of this and more with three, four, or five or more littles.  Everyone gets by, but not without at least an ounce of frustration.

With that I am taking the advice of my new best friend Elsa and letting it go–all of it.  I wasted too much time being frustrated this week.  What I learned:  it is okay to give in, but it is better to overcome.

See we have our good moments, too.

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Stay tuned for a new post about Tessa’s transition meeting.  I talk about her leaving the Birth to 3 Program and venturing into…school!

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2 thoughts on “Toddlers and Frustration.

  1. Hang in there Becky. I spent years in the military learning to improvise, overcome and adapt. It sounds to me like you are doing a wonderful job of it with Tessa and Kendal. I think the military would benefit from having more Moms in its ranks. You guys rock. There are no human beings that compare. The rest of us are mere mortals, struggling to figure out a mere portion of what you do every day…. I count my daughter Clarissa as gold member in your club. I enjoy reading about your struggles and achievements with Tessa, as I know Clarissa does. Thanks for sharing with us. As always, you will be in my thoughts and prayers.
    Mike

  2. Good. Lord. I made the mistake of putting Let It Go on my iPhone and no joke, we listened to it over 40 times tonight. What is with kids and that song??? I like it… but Holy Cow. I’m over it.
    Hang in there!! You’ve got a lot on your plate and you are doing a great job!

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