Today has been a fail of epic proportions. A parenting fail. A girlfriend fail. A life fail. It just hasn’t gone well, for anybody, all day. You know it’s bad when I’m looking FORWARD to work tomorrow. I’m mostly looking forward to dropping my son into someone else’s arms and letting them deal with him for a day. I don’t know if that makes me a bad mommy, or not, but I’m being honest here. Three day weekends are a no go for this family. Three days out of our ordinary routine just completely throws Baby Bee out of whack and he goes spinning out of control. I can’t keep him entertained for more than five seconds, can’t keep him off my apron strings (so to speak), can’t keep him out of cupboards and closets and shelves, and most importantly can’t stop his incessant WHINING. Oh my god the whining.
So much whining.
He is doing fantastic with sleeping through the night, potty training (I’m almost ready to call him fully diaper free!) and is even starting to eat a little more. But we just can’t seem to get him out of the whining phase. Most likely he never will, as I am most known in my family as a whiner. But Jesus, Mary and Joseph, I don’t think my or C’s nerves can take much more!! It’s just non stop, from the moment he wakes up to the moment he falls asleep…and when you are home together for 3 straight days, it’s just too much. I walked out today. Slipped on my flip flops, told C I was going for a walk around the block and just walked out of the apartment. My hair was a piled mess on top of my head, my face was makeup-less and my sundress was dirty but I didn’t give a flying rat’s behind. I had to get out before I exploded.
Our apartment is on the second floor with no A/C since apparently it’s against the religion up here to have air conditioning. It gets hot, and it gets stagnant and it lasts from about 8 am to 9-10 pm. Add heavy air, frustrated energy buzzing off two tense adults, and the constant energy/chattering/whining of a three year old and KA-BLOOEY you’ve got a perfect storm of FAIL. C spent most of the day holed up in the bedroom, I wandered around the apartment partly trying to find something to do and partly trying to keep my shit together while Baby Bee alternated between following me around talking and throwing massive tantrums in his room.
I felt like no matter which way I turned, no matter what I did or said, I was failing. I was failing to entertain my child, failing to keep My Love happy and failing to be calm, cool, and collected. I was none of those things today, and it does not feel good to admit. I have been at this mommy-thing now for three years and one month…you’d THINK I’d have some inkling of what the hell I’m doing. But I don’t. Good Lord, I don’t. Every day brings a new set of challenges that I feel ill equipped to handle. Every new milestone comes with a hurdle I’m not sure I can navigate safely. At every step I’m plagued with a dozen self doubts. We get through one roadblock, only to see 3 more in our path. Take this potty training fiasco, for example.
For a year, I’ve struggled with Baby Bee to get him excited and confident enough to start going potty in the toilet. He refused. Flat out refused. Then one night, he comes to us with underwear in hand and says “Mommy, I wanna wear underwears.” I told him he could wear those once he started pottying and pooping in the toilet. He stared at them for a minute and said “ok.” 5 minutes later he comes to me, grabbing his crotch and saying he has to go potty. So we go to the bathroom, and good lord almighty he goes in the toilet!!! He peed three more times that night, woke up dry, and peed as soon as he woke up the next morning. He spent all weekend dry and even pooped in the toilet the next day! He requested to wear underwear to school last week, and only had one accident all week! I still put a diaper on him during bed/naptimes but he has stayed dry all but once or twice. Like he literally decided OVER NIGHT “oh yeah, I totally got this!” He even figured out the aiming thing right away, so I thought the hardest thing was done. Oh no. Oh no no no. For one, he feels the need to show off this skill every 5 minutes. And most of the time he wants an audience. So not only do I have to explain to him that not everyone is going to want to see him go pee or poop (even though we are so very proud of him), but I have to go with him almost every time because the few times I didn’t he tried to flush a whole roll of toilet paper down the toilet (his first attempt and wiping his own butt), or totally missed the toilet and peed all over the rim/floor, or used half a dispenser of soap for his entire upper body. So now we have to discuss proper toilet paper usage, when to use the seat and when to not, when it’s appropriate to run around “makey” (BB’s word for naked) and when it’s not. Then I started thinking about inappropriate touches, and stranger danger and OH MY GOD THE LIST NEVER ENDS!!! HOW AM I EVER GOING TO HELP HIM SURVIVE HIS CHILDHOOD!?! HOW WILL I SURVIVE HIS CHILDHOOD!?!
My biggest fear is that I’m failing. And failing so bad there will be no saving him. Is it my fault that he’s so whiny? My fault that he’s so worried about everything all the time? My fault he can’t be more than 5 feet away from me without breaking out into a severe case of separation anxiety? Probably. After all, mother’s are to blame for everything right? The first two and half years of Baby Bee
s life were a living hell…for us both. Dark, uncertain, stressful times that I’m still not ready to go into detail about. Until I met C, I was alone with the massive responsibility of raising a beautiful child. I did the best I could, with what I had and gave all my heart and soul. But now I’m wondering if my best still wasn’t, isn’t, enough. I’m wondering if screwed up those fundamental years of his life so much by being shattered and terrified and unknowingly passed those fears and doubts and insecurities on to him. Will he be scared of the world like I was when he was born? Will he trust the wrong people?
I hope that I will be a good example for my Baby Bee one day, an example of a human who screws up daily, but always apologizes and tries to start fresh with the new day. Out of everything, I hope he learns that from me: to admit when you’re wrong and start over, every day.