I need a cape. Actually, I don’t. I need a clone, a new pair of running shoes, an air conditioner, an inner thermostat adjustment, a chiropractic adjustment, and an extra pair of hands. Completely true.
After the moving incident, which, if you’d like more details, can be found here, I got to put the house back together. In truth, it was a teensy bit exciting. Why, you ask? Because I normally don’t trust my handywoman abilities, and I got to prove myself wrong. I always like proving myself wrong. I put it all together, nothing fell apart, and I’m darn proud of myself. (I did, however, put part of hubby’s desk upside down, but if you don’t tell, I won’t.) I even surprised myself by hanging the TV.
I have discovered that having a toddler running around tends to change the time frame of things. Initially, I’d envisioned having the house unpacked in 2 days, as I hate boxes with a passion, and pre-kids, that’s how long it took. I also wanted to avoid any unnecessary stress for Biggest, as he does not do well with mess or change, and moving boxes are an excellent example of both.
I have had to accept that with 4 days gone, I still can’t get to my bed, and I’m lucky to find counter space to wash bottles on. I have, however, unburied the living room, both kids rooms, and the entry way. That went a long way to improving Biggest’s mood. This morning, he played quietly in his room, came out to say hello, and went back to play some more. I don’t think that has ever happened in the history of our family.
Yesterday, I got an even bigger treat than a quiet morning with my boys, which I will tell you about shortly, but it requires a bit of background. Biggest has lived with his Grammy and Pappy since he was 6 months old. He’s been kissed good night, tucked in, read stories to, watched “fishies” with, etc, for as far back as he can remember. While I’m thankful and happy for the bonding he’s been able to share with them, it has posed a bit of a problem since moving into our own place. He cries blue murder when he has to go to bed, along with many heart-wrenching, tear-jerking sobs of “tuck in, gone?” “Grammy, gone?” “Pappy, gone?” “Grammy, TUCK IN??”. We’ve explained everything as often as we can, but as harsh as it may seem, at some point, we have to (much to my own tear-jerking sympathy and therefore dismay) shut the door and turn out the light, and let him cry. He is adapting, partly because he’s so little, and partly because we’ve made many opportunities to see Grammy and Pappy, as well as reinforce the fact that they still live at their house, and we have our own house now. It is at this point where my treat begins.
I had arranged to take Biggest to Grammy’s house, it’s not that far of a walk, and I thought that it would help if we saw her in the morning instead of a tuck-in (The plan is a tuck-in for the first 4 days, then a daily visit for another 4 days, followed by a phone call for 4 days, and so on), so Grammy came to pick us up. Now, with the 4 flights of stairs that our beloved apartment is at the top of, lugging strollers has taken on a whole new meaning. I have been puzzling since I first took the boys out as to how I could make it less of a “me in a tangled heap of stroller and children” kind of situation, so on the day in question, I thought that I had found a solution. I have a single umbrella stroller that my mother bought for me when Biggest was little, it has a complete recine, a built in carrying handle, a small wheel base for aisles with a tight fit, and it’s light weight. Genius. I’ll cart Littlest down the stairs, use my diaper bag as a backpack (another find of my mother’s, I will use it until it dies), carry the stroller, and Biggest can go down the stairs next to me. I never got a chance to test it as my mother got here sooner than I expected, and was able to help with the downstairs trip. Off we went.
On the way, I was treated to a frappuccino. The wasps this time of year love frappuccino. It didn’t bother me too much until we were almost at her house, and, as I was holding on to Biggest’s hand, I didn’t even think when a wasp darted next to my neck, I just swung. With an open coffee in my hand. Biggest, dumbest Mommy moment yet, at least, next to the time where I thought I didn’t need to bring a bottle, as I was only going out for 20 minutes. My cup of cold coffee (thank heavens I had drank most of it) went all down the back of Biggest, all down the back of me, and all over the diaper bag. After cleaning it up, we made it to Grammy’s. Biggest went into a bath, his shirt got rinsed and put in the drier. I then got a phone call from hubby, who needed bus tickets, as the ones we already bought were buried in the vastness that is currently my bedroom. Ok, I’ll just get a… ride? *sigh* In my haste to make my trip down the stairs easier, I completely forgot that I didn’t have a carseat for Littlest. Fine, Biggest will have to walk. I was terrified. I’ve never made a trip that long with him walking, and I didn’t know how I was going to push the stroller and hang onto his hand. I have to take this side note and tell you that I don’t know where this child came from, but he is the most amazing human being under 3 years old that I have ever met. We walked all the way to the bus ticket store, and he held on to the side of the stroller (yay for realizing that my Mommy Hook made a convenient handle). He held it the whole time. Across the street. When we stopped. The whole time. Anyway. We got to the counter, and despite having no sign, they don’t take Visa. Great. Now I have to walk to the bank machine (another 4 blocks) to get cash out so I can come back. Not exactly happy about that. So we walk, and make it to our favorite restaurant (where I was hoping to meet hubby so he didn’t need to use the change, the fact that they didn’t take visa at the ticket counter made that impossible, however, I still wanted to say hello). I missed him by 15 minutes. Oh well, Biggest walked a long way, we could stop for some coffee and juice, and say hello to his Pappy S. who owns the place. I then realize that I left my extra bottle in Grammy’s fridge. Thank heavens Littlest is sleeping, but now I have to phone my Dad, and wait for delivery of said bottle. So we sat, and ate muffins, and had coffee. It was nice. As we were now downtown, I thought that we should go and check out the toy store for a truck for Biggest, for his efforts. I also thought that I had seen a mom gadget that would work better than the Mommy Hook for a handle, so we went and checked that out too. I should remind you that my child has suddenly glued himself to the Mommy Hook. He didn’t move from the stroller in any of the stores I had to go to, and he didn’t touch anything either. After that, we went for groceries (which was my original intention, back before I’d realized that I couldn’t get a ride as I didn’t have a carseat. But we were out of formula so I didn’t have a choice). Then we went back to the bank, and back to the ticket counter. It was at this point that my child reminded me that we could take a bus instead of walk back. Duh. I’m ashamed to admit that my son was way smarter than me, as I never even thought of using the bus tickets once I had them. So we went, and waited for the bus. I’m so proud of him, you have no idea. He made it through all the stores, didn’t touch anything, didn’t tantrum about anything, and to top it all off, he didn’t have a nap. True story.
In reality, it shouldn’t seem like a treat. It was a series of unfortunate events. But the treat was found in seeing my son behave in public, and in realizing that I myself was capable of handling him alone. In explaining my day to my husband (who we met at the bus stop on the way home, by the way), I realized that I didn’t believe I could actually handle him unless he was in the big buggy. It was nothing to do with him, I knew he could do it, I just didn’t think I could do it. Another chance to prove myself wrong.
I have to go dig out the kitchen now, it’s bottle time, and I think, if I squint, I can see the handle of my boiling pot. Wish me luck!