Monday, May 18, 2009

After Which, I Need a Cocktail

Through my groggy, sleep-deprived eyes I'm trying to figure out what I should type on this screen. So much happened this weekend. It seems there's no rest for the postpartum. Hold please while I take a few more gulps of coffee. OK. I'm good.

Besides trying to find my daily groove in life with two we've got girls nights and birthday parties, dinosaur shows and house projects, airplane travel and house selling. And then there's the biggest time guzzler in my schedule. Toddler behavior.

Now that Baby Lucy has arrived the question I am asked most often is, "How is William doing?"

My response is always the same. William is very good with Lucy. When he remembers that she's here. But most of the time he's busy driving his trucks around the floor and making pretend play with his dinosaur. The fact that a new little life is taking up residence at our house seems to escape him for the majority of the day.

But it seems he has noticed that our attention toward him has been divided and for that his behavior has suffered slightly. Normally the easiest child to put to bed, he's now decided it's a pretty fun game to continually get up after the door's been close and the lights are out. Sometimes this goes on until the blasphemous hour of ten o'clock. Absurd for a two-year-old.

Granted, this wouldn't be so bad if he ended up sleeping a few extra hours in the morning. Ah, but that would be too easy, wouldn't it? Instead his little eyelids like to open somewhere in the outrageous six o'clock hour. Not so bad for most kids but for my little sleeper who normally wakes between 7:30 and 8:00, his little body just can't take that kind of lack of sleep.

So with three hours fewer of sleepy time something has to give and it turns out that something is his behavior.

Yesterday we were forced to attend 11 o'clock mass. We had a birthday party the night before that prevented us from going Saturday evening and William and daddy has a special outing planed for Sunday evening that prevented us from going Sunday evening.

So 11 o'clock it was. It was right before lunch and nap which means he was getting hungry and tired. It's also the most-crowded mass which means there wasn't a lot of room for him to move around within our pew. And it's the longest mass. He's two, need I say more? It was the perfect storm for a breakdown. And that's exactly what happened.

The first one (yes, there was more than one breakdown) was during the consecration. Can kids sense the most sacred part of the mass?

Brian promptly took him out of the church for a little timeout in the gathering room. Brian told me it was difficult to get his self-control lesson across to William because while he was standing in the corner trying to calm himself there were other children running willy nilly all around him. It turns out some other parents turn church-going into play hour. OK, I'm not going to judge.

Moving on.

William returned to our pew a newly-calmed toddler.

That lasted all of five minutes.

When we got up to receive communion I made the unforgivable mistake of leaving his Lightening McQueen car on our seat. William fa-REAKED out! In the communion line. For all of St. Ambrose parishioners to witness.

When we returned to our seats the tantrum continued and when I tried to use Lightning McQueen as a pawn ("Stop crying or you can't having Lightning McQueen back") that only escalated the matter. Now there was flopping on the floor and flailing of limbs.

Since it was the end of mass there was nothing left to do but ignore the matter. So that's what we did.

Brian and I stood and sang the closing song all the while pretending we had no idea who dragged in this obnoxious kid thrashing about us.

When we finally got to the blessed privacy of our own car in the parking lot I exclaimed, "And that's why we don't go to the 11 o'clock mass!"

"How many dirty looks did we get?" I asked Brian.

"Oh, I'd say about 30 to 50."


Well at least we'll never see those people again since I'm banishing our family from 11 o'clock mass until William turns 16.


  1. I love your posts, Jenny.

    You make me laugh because you're so honest. So real. I appreciate that.

    Our 2-year-old is attentive and adoring to her little sister, but she has had a little trouble "adjusting" to the lack of attention too. That said, I think it's good for her in many ways. She's becoming much more independent.

  2. You absolutely, positively MUST save a copy of this entry for about 25 years. And then, one day when now-28-year-old William is tearing his hair out over some embarassing thing that HIS son or daughter has done, you need to hobble over to your archive file, pull this story out, hand it to him without a word, and then hobble back to your rocking chair. And smile--you know, the smug little smile that says, "Now we're even, you little turd."

    Very funny story--thanks for my laugh of the day!

  3. Jen,

    I've totally been here and I laugh out loud because I understand the craziness!!!



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