Like I said, Tuesday was a bad day. It was so bad that I cried. But not until after I had gotten home from Rosie's play and sat down and realized that I still had to do the dishes. It was so bad that on Wednesday morning I still wasn't feeling like having a lot of fun. So I took the girls to the park and told them to play.
And then I read.
Like three whole pages in my book before being interrupted.
"I want to swing! Will you push me?"
"Help me climb this ladder!"
"I want a snack!"
"I want a drink!"
"There's no one to play with!"
"I found a rock!"
"Watch me do this!"
So I helped them get a snack and a drink and watched them do their cool tricks and helped the climb up the impossible and pushed them on the swings. It's the last part that killed my spurt of energy.
Just as I helped Rachel onto the "big girl" swing, two ladies in my neighbourhood walked by.
"Hi, Nancy! How are you?" they called out.
"I'm fine, thanks," I said. And then I pushed Rachel...and then she flew out of the swing and landed on her back.
I'm sure I'm not the only mother this has happened to. At least, I hope I'm not the only mother this has happened to because this is not the first time it has happened to me. In fact, the last time it happened I believe I was talking to my mom about some people who were getting on my nerves and had just said, quite snootily, "I'm just as smart, if not smarter, than any of them!"
And then, like magic, Miriam plopped out of the swing and landed flat on her face. So everyone who had just heard me profess my intelligence also got to see my daughter fall off the swing.
It was one of those very, very humbling moments. I was a tad angry at the grown man sitting on the baby swing—which is why Miriam was on a "big girl" swing in the first place—but mostly I was angry at myself, both for letting her fall and for letting those awful, prideful words escape my lips. Live and learn, I guess.
Yesterday's falling-off-the-swing incident was just as embarrassing. I rushed to pick Rachel up off the ground to comfort her and she immediately began casting blame.
"You pushed me too hard! I hate it when you do that! If you would push me right I wouldn't fall! Why can't you just push me right?"
And since that's all I heard from her yesterday and was maxed out on having judgmental insults thrown my way I snapped, "As if this is all my fault! If you would just hold on then you wouldn't fall off!"
If the world's best mother award hasn't been claimed, I'll take it—because look how awesome I am!
Needless to say, it was not the most graceful scene to stumble upon and those two ladies in my neighbourhood didn't even walk past us again so that I could say, "When I said I was 'fine' I meant that I actually feel like I'm ready to snap—just keep that in mind while you're digesting that lovely moment you witnessed earlier between my daughter and me."
Fortunately, children are among the most forgiving creatures on the planet. Rachel was all hugs and snuggles today (of course, she was also at preschool from 9-12, at a friend's house from 12-3, and then had that friend over from 3-4, so really I only had to deal with her from 8-9 in the morning and from 4-8:30 at night) even though I was still feeling a little on edge from Tuesday. Seriously...I don't think words can even describe Tuesday. It was like Rachel was exchanged with a poltergeist—like she was in one of the nightmares I had when I was expecting her.
Anyway, I then told the girls that they were on. their. own. I was sitting on down and I was not getting up until it was time to go and if they could't climb up a ladder or slide down a slide or find the right stick then they could come up with their own solution. And then I lied down and chanted nanuami tofu dah while the girls figured out how to play together. They figured out things like Rachel can help Miriam climb the ladder and that Miriam is a very good stick-finder and, most importantly, that they can play together nicely without me.
I'm not sure how long it lasted but I do know that I lied there for a few uninterrupted minutes, just watching the sunlight filter through the leaves and listening to my girls narrate their play. It was kind of relaxing. But then the children came back to visit me, of course. And do you know what? They look so different when I'm looking up at them than when I'm looking down on them.
On our way home we stopped by my parents' house and my dad made the girls grilled-cheese sandwiches for lunch. His sandwiches are always extra melty.
And when we got home we found this weird bug on the window.
I think it's a Locust Borer (Megacyllene robiniae). The girls were scared of it because they thought it was a wasp. It does kind of look like a wasp—if you look at it quick.
Anyway, today was better than yesterday, which was loads better than Tuesday.
(Plus, Andrew just promised to fix the closet door for me tomorrow—I already removed it in a prolonged fit of rage today (long enough to find a screwdriver and unscrew three screws so I could remove the door because it was stuck half open and half closed and I couldn't get it to budge either way and I still had laundry to put away and it was driving me nuts! I said today was better than yesterday, not that today was perfect)).
If this pattern continues then tomorrow should be relatively alright. Things are looking up!