Thursday, October 3, 2013

Foliage Thursday

Well, I'm a little late getting to Foliage Thursday, but that's okay, because... we didn't do that much. I had to call into a work meeting in the afternoon, and poor E was weepy from a bad diaper rash. After the call, I let her soak in the tub while I played with her in the water and visited with my mom on the phone. We picked up the apartment, and she helped me make dinner.

I've been having a hard time getting her to sit through a meal, but tonight she was content to sit and eat, cross-legged in the kitchen, in one of the big dining room chairs, her dinner bowl in her lap. I pulled up a chair next to her to eat my own dinner. "Sure, why not?"

One of her favorite new phrases is, "I'm happy," or as she says it, "My happy!" as she points to her big grin. Then she asks if I'm happy. I always say, "If you're happy, I'm happy."

It's true. But, I have to admit that I love that I get more of a glimpse of her little personality when she's sad or when she sees me sad. I had a little meltdown during dinner when the food was done, and E was hanging on me crying. I was trying to prevent her from getting burnt while not burning the food while still letting her "help" in the kitchen and giving her all the sympathy and patience I could, knowing that she was just cranky from that diaper rash. I broke down and cried a little, just a stress release from... everything. I sat down on the couch to take a moment.

She crawled up in my arms, touched my face and said, "Mommy crying? Mommy sad?"
"Yeah, but I'll be okay. I'm just a little stressed with dinner and everything. Can you help me?"
"Yeah, I gib you huggies."

And it did help, and I know I'm doing something right. Some people would say that I should hold it together, be the rock, not let her see me cry. I tell myself that sometimes, too, but tonight I just let myself have a little sob-it-out moment. Then we talked it out, got up 2 minutes later, and went on with our night.

And I can't get that image out of my mind -- of her looking at me with genuine concern, that hint of empathy. I worry so much about being a good parent. I let her have her way a lot, maybe too much sometimes. Like, does she really need to cover her stuffed duck in (washable) paint just to spend an hour giving it a bath in the sink? Probably not, but I let her. She throws typical toddler temper tantrums, and I sometimes give in out of sheer exhaustion or bored indifference, but I'm trying for consistency.

My mom motto has and always will be, "I'll do better tomorrow," and I preached the same thing to her this morning when she confessed that she had hurt one of her classmates at day care.

"I hurt Jodi's leg."
"Did you scratch him?"
"What did the teacher say."
"She said, 'Stop!'"
"Did you stop?"
"Did you apologize?"
"Ok, well let's do better at day care today. Please don't scratch anyone else. And, if someone scratches or pushes you, you need to say..."
"Stop it!"
"That's right. And then you tell..."
"Well, Jacob is a toddler like you. Please tell an adult. Tell Katie."

I think she's getting it. And, hopefully, me too!

Here's a picture of a big ol' spider in our window last night and the sun setting over our little apartment in the Green Mountain State. Tomorrow, Friday, I head across the lake to New York. My first weekend traveling without my baby! My dad is graduating and becoming a deacon in the church. This is a huge accomplishment, and I can't wait to share this celebration with my family! More foliage pics to come!

Wow, our window is dirty.

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