When you have children your life turns upside down. There’s this bundle of helpless joy that is completely dependent on you. You mould them and shape them as best as you can and then pray to God that they retain something.
When Kaylee was born it was quite the learning experience. She would, as she says now, ‘have to set the bar’ for everything her siblings would go through. From rules on curfew, dating, sleepovers, driving, etc. etc.
We sure experiment on the first ones don’t we? And everything is completely ‘by the book’ on the first. We sterilize everything that comes within their airspace. If we drop a bottle or pacifier it becomes no good! Need to sterilize that nipple! Then by the second kid we don’t need to sterilize it, we just wipe if off real good. By the third kid we drop the bottle and just stick it back in their mouth.
The first child teaches us that everything we read about and planned for is out the window because life just doesn’t happen ‘by the book’.
When temper tantrums begin we curiously wonder what we have ‘spawned’ and what we did to deserve this. God ‘must’ be punishing me for something. Maybe I’m being punished for what I did to MY mother! LOL
They go off to preschool and learn a lot of independence. They also learn to say ‘I hate you’ and they stomp around a lot. The first time Kaylee told me she hated me (after not getting her way of course) I took it to heart. I actually shed a tear. I thought, “OMG my kid actually hates me and she’s only 4!”
Over the years and when she became a teen….that ‘I hate you’ routine gets old. Now it solicits a response of “Yeah? Well I hate you too right now!” That will usually do the trick and that nasty little phrase doesn’t come out much.
I made the mistake of when MC was born to recruit Kaylee’s help. ‘The books all say’ to have the oldest be ‘mommy’s little helper’ so they feel included in the new baby’s arrival and care. BIG MISTAKE. The little helper has turned into a second mother in her teens. I often remind her that “I’m the one who gave birth” to her siblings so I’m the one who will reprimand them.
I also remember those big giant goose-eggs on her forehead for a 12 month period til the time she was three. They came from purposefully banging her head on anything hard (like floors and cement) when she didn’t get her way.
There was also that time at the mall when she didn’t want to go home and lay down kicking and screaming on the floor. I was trying to pull her up as she was drawing a crowd yelling…..”You can’t make me go! You are NOT MY MOTHER!” Yeah, I should have got the picture right then should’nt I have?