This ain’t my first rodeo but there is a new bull in the ring.
I think its safe to say my last baby is now in toddler mode. I’m not sure why they call it the terrible 2’s. Was it suppose to mean the terrible next 2 -3 years? Cuz I’m pretty sure that’s how long this next phase lasts. Now, I love my kids – like most momma’s out there they are the reason I get up every morning (and not because they like to get me out of bed every morning – very, very early every morning.) But the toddler phase – Oye! It can be a tough one at times.
You would think after 4 babies (and the last one being a big surprise) I would be jumping for joy to see this baby era ending but I must admit I have quite a bit of mourning. There is nothing like bringing a baby into the world, nothing more mesmerizing than watching them sleep in your arms. Seeing all their firsts, snuggling after baths and breathing in that baby goodness. So to cheer myself up and more importantly to rev myself up for the challenges that come with toddlerhood I’ve been thinking about all the good things that come with this next chapter of life.
- No more diapers! We are not there yet but I can see the light! Seriously I have been buying diapers for 8 straight years – sometimes 2 sizes at a time. I don’t know what I’m going to do that first month I make my trip to Sam’s Club and I don’t put a huge box of diapers in my cart. I’m not sure I am ready to stop buying the wipes however. Those things are awesome! They work on bottoms, hands, faces, even carpets. I’m serious. My toddler just squished a raspberry into my dining room carpet. Scrubbed the spot with a baby wipe and it came right out. My poor kids are going to be 14 and I will still be wiping their mouths off with wipes from my purse as they try to dodge me.
- This leads me to the next point. Leaving the house without a diaper bag. When I leave the house I usually have a diaper baby, my big purse and possibly an “errands” bag or child’s backpack in my hand, if not more. I look like a bag lady. It will be a relief to cut down on one item. I will probably still look like a bag lady but at the very least not one who also hoards.
- Removing the baby gates. I’ve gotten to do this periodically through the last few years between babies. When you have had baby gates in your house for any length of time you know that moment when you take them down feels like freedom. When I took the baby gate off my stairway the last time I went up and down the stairs all willy nilly like about 5 times just because I could.
- Going to McDonalds and having all your kids old enough to go into the playland. There is nothing like that moment when you are alone at the table with just your husband and your Big Mac.
- Getting to have “conversations”with them. Once you get past the whole “NO!”and “Mine!”stage it can be a blast talking to a little kid. Kids are hilarious – you never know what is going to come out of their mouths. Sometimes it can be scary and embarrassing or just downright rude because they have absolutely no filter – Tonight my 4 year got to have some puppy chow bought at a concession stand. He proceeded to tell me not once, but three times how much better that puppy chow was than the puppy chow I had made last time. Yes Trey, I know I botched the last batch by running out of powdered sugar – However like I said a lot of time they are so darn funny. So many times I have wished I would have kept a journal of the funny things they have come up with. I think I could have written a book by now.
- Getting to do things as a family. I think I am most excited about this. It’s been tricky these last few years doing things with my older kids while juggling a baby. I look forward to doing things together that we ALL can partake in – even if just going sledding or going to the pool. Pretty soon my older ones aren’t going to think its cool to hang out with us anymore and I need to be able to savor this moment in time where I’m still “hip and with it” in their eyes. As one of my now grown nephews once said many years ago “I’m cool, right guys!?”
Ok. Well I know there’s more but I think I am feeling a little better. I’ve come to the conclusion that your kids growing up can be like marriage – its for better or for worse. It comes with your ups and your downs. You just gotta learn from your downs and treasure your ups.