Monday, December 29, 2003

December 29, 2003

I wanted to add that today Reagan began talking about his club again. Now he wanted Karina to join. Thanks to the shout out I received, this time I asked him what we could do as members and took some time to really enjoy being part of the club. He hadn't really thought out what membership meant. I think to him it's a way of telling someone that he really likes them and accepts them. Today I did take the time to enjoy it, and to be grateful that my son wants me to be a part of his inner circle.

Sometimes I definitely need other moms to remind me that what I have in my children wont last forever. And I can't spend too much time being annoyed at the things they will grow out of. I have to enjoy the good and the bad now. I know that I wont get another shot at enjoying any one of them.

May I continue to remember to count my blessings. And may God turn down the production of hormones that make me crazy.

There is no rest for the weary. That is my completely unbiased assessment of motherhood. A friend was kind enough to remind me recently that there is no one on earth we could spend all day every day with and still like, let alone love. And the fact that we still like and love our children is a testement to the deep bond between parent and child. So, I suppose I shouldn't be too hard on myself when I don't feel like I've been the best mommy.

There are things I love about having all three kids in the house. But while Karina is very respectful and wouldn't dream of disobeying me (despite not being her mom) I'm not her mom. I don't always feel comfortable setting the boundaries. I do it anyway, but I'm not always comfortable with it.

Today I dropped Dominic and K. off at the movies and then took the other two kids to the facility where I worked last night, as I'd accidentally taken the keys home with me. While we were there we interviewed with volunteer services and they seem very excited to have another homeschooling family join the team. They really have a very high opinion of homeschooled children. Then we hit the grocery store. Piper was tired and didn't want to sit in the cart. And the girl has a set of lungs on her! But I refuse to be bullied by a one-year-old. So we carried on and I tried to make the trip as educational as possible. I pointed out prices so Reagan could see which was cheaper and had him count things as we put them in the cart, etc.

K. is a big help with school. She was able to give R. his Spelling pre-test while I unloaded groceries. It gave me an idea of what it might be like to educate more than one at a time. Of course there's the other side of having them together. The "please stop touching me" and "that's not fair!" of normal siblings. That gives me a headache. And Piper's been on a tear today where she screams whenever something is taken away from her. Again, I refuse to be bullied, and I don't give in to temper tantrums. I just put her somewhere safe and then ignore her until it stops. I wonder how long exactly it will take for her to get the idea.

I really spent a lot of today frustrated with the kids. And I can totally understand how easy it is to let the kids run the show. If giving them what they want makes the headache better, I see why parents do it. I'm just completely convinced that in the long run the headache will be much worse. Right now it is a struggle to instill that we are a family and a team and that we must be respectful of one another. But my hope is that in the long run it will pay off in deep personal relationships within the family. I hope that they become more than siblings. I hope they become friends. And I want them to feel safe and secure in the knowledge that their parents run the show. The world is just too big and scary to let them be in charge!

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