There are some days where I literally think that my head is going to explode. Wait, did I say some? I meant most. Being a mom is one of the most frustrating jobs on Earth. Usually, my 6-year old is pretty obedient, and tries his best to be as helpful as he can. But there are those times when for some reason, the words I say fly right past over his head. Take this morning, for instance. "Jacob, please go downstairs and get dressed for school." He comes upstairs, and instead of his school uniform, he's wearing his torn play pants and a grungy tee shirt. "What are you wearing? Please go back downstairs and get dressed for SCHOOL." He comes running upstairs a few minutes later, tearing into the living room to continue his golf game. I peek in the living room between applying lipstick and mascara, only to find him in his school pants, and a different grungy tee. Cue explosion.
Water is another source of frustration in my house. Every day, there is a water mess to clean. My 1-year old splashes in the cat bowl, causing me to not only dry the floor with one of my kitchen towels, but to change his now soaking outfit. With the dishes on top of the counter, I think I'm safe...until I find my 2-year old standing on a chair, and lapping the cat's water, as well as pouring water onto the counter from a cup he pulled from the sink. Ugh. But that's on a good day. On a typical day, he's standing in the bathroom, filling the sink to overflowing. He's pouring water from one cup to another, splashing over the counter...and all over his clothes. Another outfit is always necessary. Then, on a bad day, he's filling the bathroom cups and pouring them onto the floor. He literally made a lake in my bathroom the other day. I felt about 10 gray hairs pop up at that very moment, probably from the steam that shot out from my red ears. Today, I found him under our roll-top desk...playing with the dish of water. I'm beginning to really hate water.
Last night, all four of my boys were sick. My 2-year old woke up after an hour, crying and miserable with a cough and fever. He couldn't sleep, and refused to lie quietly in bed. Instead, he screamed and cried until after an hour of trying to ignore it, I finally got him. Somehow, the baby stayed mostly asleep. I tried cuddling with him in my bed. Most children can lie quietly and cuddle with Mom. Not Jarod. He shot up repeatedly, talking (loudly) about everything he saw, everything he thought about. He is still learning to talk, and tends to repeat himself. A lot. Finally, I gave up and took him back to bed. He was quiet for another few minutes, but once I turned in my bed, sighing deeply and ready to embrace sleep, his sweet little voice called out miserably, "Mama!" By that time, it was 1 a.m. I shuffled into his room, applying Vick's vaporub to his feet. At that time, my husband came home. He lovingly peeked into the room, only to set off both the baby and Jarod into a frenzy of angry excitement. Great. Now I had 2 screaming sick kids. I tried comforting each one (which I secretly loved), but was frustrated because I was TIRED.
Eventually, my husband took Jarod, and Caleb finally fell asleep. I was able to crawl back into bed while Jarod snuggled with Spencer on the couch, watching cartoons. I was ripped out of my sleep at 3:40 am to my 5-year old crying in the bathroom, because not only did he have a cough, but he didn't want to wipe himself. I did it myself, gave him more medicine, and collapsed once again into bed. Of course, the next morning, Spencer had to wake up at 6:40 am for his early class, and the little boys only slept in until 7:40. Sometimes, I just want to lie down on the floor, kicking and flailing my arms and legs, and yell, "No fair, no fair, no fair!!"