You may have heard me talk about this son of ours. His name, as you know, is Cian. Cian is two and a half. Cian lives a much different life than his sisters did when they were his age. He doesn’t go to Music Together class. He hasn’t been signed up for MyGym. We hardly ever, ever go to the library, but that’s mainly because I never remember to take back the books on time and we keep racking up overdue fees (role model up in HERE!). His last playdate was two months ago. Want to know what Cian does?
Cian plays while Mommy flails about on her computer in the mornings. I type a little of this, a little of that, then erase it all to wail and gnash my teeth and go write a blog post like this instead. So, Cian plays. And maybe watches Little Einsteins. And poops, then asks for a snack (every. single. day, just like that. Happy to share). We eat lunch together, then tidy up (sometimes), then traipse off to pick his sisters up from school. Every day. It has to be so boring for him. I wish I’d signed him up for a couple of preschool days just to get the poor kid out of the house. Part of me feels terrible about this–I am not a thinker-header, so there’s some guilt there just because I have the long-term planning skills of a fruit fly. Part of me thinks that he’s actually a really happy kid, so I should just lighten up.
Cian still does not want to sleep by himself, ever. He screams and cries and shouts out in terror if we leave his room before he falls asleep. When he wakes in the middle of the night, he crawls into our bed. If we walk him back to his room, there are more cries and shouts of terrors and pleas for “Mommy! Daddy! SEEP with meee!” If we sneak out once he’s fallen asleep, he finds us again. If we take the dog out in the middle of the night, he waits at the top of the stairs for us. Cian wakes in the morning, sits down to breakfast, and says, “Mommy? I’m TIRED.” We don’t know what to do about this. Everyone is so very, very tired.
I love this kid dearly. And we keep plodding along, he and I and his dad and his sisters, trying to make the most of each day even though, like so many others, the grown-ups in the family wish we could move into a Pottery Barn catalog or Pinterest picture and live there for a while, because it’s so…tidy. And happy. And organized. Organized is not my thang. I keep trying, but then I turn around and find that all of the shoes are piled in the middle of my bedroom–right outside the closet door–anyway. It’s easy to feel like a failure every day, isn’t it? But isn’t that a craptastic way to go about our lives?
Today is election day. We’re going to pick up the girls from school, Cian and I, and swing by the polls–we make sure the kids go with us every single time we vote, because Americans and all–and head home. It’s going to be warm here today, so we’ll take the puppy for a long walk while there’s still light, or the kids will play in the yard while I flail about some more nearby on the laptop. I’m going to make dinner (possibly via Chipotle. Thou shall not judge thy neighbor’s need for a burrito bowl) and they’re going to do that crazy jumping game they do with David and they’re going to get baths and off to bed by 7:30 or so because come whatever crazy happens around here, David and I make sure the kids are in bed at an early hour.
I snapped a picture the other day of Cian going down the stairs of our house. Sometimes he walks down, holding one of our hands or bracing himself against the wall, taking the stairs one at a time the way determined little toddlers do. But other times, like this, he doesn’t feel like going to all that effort. So he sits down on his bottom and slides down, still taking one stair at a time, bump-bump-bump. And you know what? Either way he goes–proper, streamlined, determined stepping, or kind of lazy, tired, bump-bump-bumping–he still ends up exactly where he wants to be.
We’re too hard on ourselves. I feel like if I write one more post about failing or guilt or stress, I’m going to poke myself in the eye, but you know what? It’s life. And it’s life right now. But we’re getting there. We will get there. Even if it means sliding around on our bottoms a little on the way.