Monday, November 28, 2011


i knew from the moment that she exited her cocoon of a bed that she was still tired. 
so tired.

she fell into a heap of tears because of ... something. 
{i have really no idea what it was}

and then she sobbed because we were heading to pick up grandma for a day at the zoo.
{i still don't really understand why}

and she was full of smiles and laughter and love and joy and happy.
{and all of those other nice positive filled words}

but throughout the day i found myself quietly whispering ... she is so tired.
she is just really so tired.
excusing her from my frustration with her just being four-ness.  her tiredness.  her tears.  her flipflopping happies and sads.
or trying to.

i have days where i feel like i'm totally and completely failing everyone that relies so heavily on me for oh-so-many things.
and days where i kinda pat myself on the back for maintaining composure and managing 3 children.
i was kind of patting myself after accomplishing zoo in 2 hours.  with 3 non-crying children.
wherein i (thankfully had mom along ... but still) managed to encourage curiousity.  answer questions.  create questions.  ask questions. 
i was *that* mom.
and it felt so freaking good.

grandma invited us all over for dinner. 
so we managed to get finners there napless.
and managed to put him down.
and managed to eat peacefully.
{which isn't always accomplishable when finners is around}

and then it was time to leave.
probably *past* time to leave ...

and cora lost it.

she's so tired.
she is just really really tired.
i whispered to noone but myself.

and i herded everyone to the car.
and went back for her.

i've taken to calling her my "pickle in the middle"
i don't know.
i hated that game as a child.
it's like the outsides are teasing you and taunting you.  and there just really isn't any sure way to get that ball from their hands.  i feel nervous and clicky and anxious thinking about it. 
i hate that game.
but that girl has my heart. 
i love that girl.

i went back for her and scooped her up ... sobbing.  crying. ... picked up her purple boots and carried her to the car after her pitiful goodbyes to the grandma that she didn't want to see today anyways but was super excited to see when we saw her.

she continued the whimpering and the crying ... as we drove home. 

finn was noticeably worried about her ... and i heard his sweet little voice from the backseat ...


and i watched as he reached out his little bitty hand to her and just simply held hers for the remainder of the ride home.

i cried.

i cried alone quietly ... because i know that i can accomplish things like zoo with three kids.  and dinner from nothing in the cupboard.  and studying for spelling tests.  and reprimanding snooty almost 8 year olds.  and managing bedtime.  and up-all-nighters.  and no coffee creamer kinds of mornings.

but my success as a mama rested alone in his reach for her to comfort her when she was hurting.

tomorrow they will probably fight.

i'm sure someone will be tired.  really really tired.
or teething.
or just snooty.
or crabby.
or sick.

because someone always is.

and i'll probably find something else to take pride in.  and i'll probably kick myself for doing something else. 

i wonder where she gets it.


Anonymous said...

my first child is 18 months old and we are trying out this whole discipline. today when i went to get him from his crib after ONE minute, his whole body was shaking and he hit me hard in the face. this flipflop that you write of is starting in our home and it is so comforting to read of it in someone else's. you say it so beautifully too.

christine said...

I love this. I just love it. There are so many things to take pride in but then also so many things to kick myself for... And my daughter is a flipflopper too. (But then, she just might get it from me too.)

Adventures In Babywearing said...

Oh, those EYES!


Kimberly said...

It is absolutely amazing to see our children comfort one another...while I only have one, he comforts me. I have been sick for quite sometime and he'll curl up and snuggle with me.
He even says "Momma, I will rub your back and it makes you feel better"
Kids are beautiful.
Lovely post and that picture is awesome

anymommy said...

I've lived that moment, where one child reaches out to comfort another and it's so painfully beautiful and you're so proud of who you've raised.

This is gorgeous.

CJ said...

Absolutely beautiful! Isn't it amazing how well we KNOW our children and are the first to jump to their defense when they're being less than "perfect" in the eyes of others?

Krista @ Not Mommy of the Year said...

This was amazing. One of those pieces that pulled me right in, reading your words, hearing your voice, but seeing my kids and my moments in them.

Herb of Grace said...

So precious... BTDT, too :) It's those moments that are our salvation as mothers, no?

Naomi said...

Oh my goodness, that is so sweet! Love it!

Mommy Mo said...

First time visitor, from Heather of the EO. I so get this post, it brought tears to MY eyes. I do the same with my middle child, I am also a middle child. I love the way you put it into words.

simplicity said...

There are mornings within 20 minutes I can determine just how my middle little's day is going to go. He's tired. Good post!

The Naked Mother said...

Beautiful. I have a flipflopper too, you can just tell when they're going to have one of those days...

darcie said...


His little are raising good kids there ya know. Great kids.