When I think back to the time when the babies were little and how difficult it all was and how miserable I always felt and how chaotic our lives were, I really am amazed that we came out of that intact –thank you Jesus! Those days when I didn’t even get to shower because the infant wanted to be carried all day and the toddler was whiny because the infant was getting all the attention. Those days where I just couldn’t sync their naps no matter how many tricks I tried, and how I was just so exhausted all the time because they were always awake – day and night. How the husband and I were constantly at each others’ throats about absolutely everything; it was the most difficult time of my life.
This morning we were going through the motions as we always do (I call our morning routine organised chaos) and while I was applying my mascara with Liam brushing his teeth giving me instructions on how to get it just right and Hannah unrolling the entire roll of toilet paper and flushing it down the bog, I couldn’t help but proudly ponder on how far we’ve come and how good we have become at this parenting thing… ok we are most definitely not good at this parenting thing… let me rephrase that… how good the husband and I have become at running the household. Of course it does help that the kids are a bit older now and can do many things independently, but our self imposed routines have really paid off and I can’t help but air punch when I think about how we generally run like a well oiled machine… except when we don’t, due to toddler tantrums, mommy meltdowns and daddy downpours – because we ALL have our moments when we lose it just a little hey.
Without even having to speak to each other, the husband and I feed off each other; while I’m getting done in the morning, he is waking Liam and getting him ready. While the husband is getting ready, I am brushing Liam’s teeth, lathering his face with lotion and brushing his hair. While I oooh and aaah over what to wear, the husband is downstairs making lunches and feeding Liam. During all this time, Hannah may or may not wake up, and she kinda hovers in the background and follows us around as she has nothing to do and nowhere to go during the week. But she does help me pick out shoes or fetch my perfume or whatever else I may need – bless her. Our evenings are the same, Zoleka starts my pots for me, so when we get home either the husband or I will finish the cooking. Before supper, the kids will draw, watch tv, read, run around in circles screaming – whatever floats their boats on that particular day. Either the husband baths the kids and I dress them, or vice versa, or we each bath and dress one kid – whatever floats our boats on that particular day. Daddy and Liam read aloud while I brush Hannah’s hair, we pray and read together and then we part ways with a kid each for bed time. And then we do adult things like watch tv, eat all the goodies without having to duck from the kids, talk about big people’s things and so on.
You may think it’s boring and predictable but I love the security and comfort that comes from knowing what comes next. Yes there’s room for spontaneity like when we decide to do free Spur burgers on a Monday night, or go for walks in the summer before bed time (ok they walk, I sit on a bench in the park), but on the whole I like the humdrum of everyday. It’s a far cry from the crazy days when we had two screaming babies and we both didn’t know what to do and we were always late for everything because we just couldn’t get it right, and everyone was always miserable because no one had slept enough or the food was always burnt or cold or mommy just wanted some alone time because it was all just too much!
Thank you very much, I like this well oiled machine with it’s buttons and knobs that I finally know how to work. And just when things get a bit too boring, we’re always surprised with an unexpected vomit, or a runny poo or a kid who just won’t sleep at night… just to put things into perspective and make sure we don’t become too complacent. 🙂