I've had a tough couple of weeks with the kids that have been compounded by Jon traveling. I don't like to complain about Jon traveling because this is the right job for him now, but it leaves me drained to have no backup, double the work, and less rest. I have not been myself - much more irritable and grumpy and short-tempered. I don't like it. I don't want to be that kind of mom.
We had a really nice honeymoon period between 13 months and 19 months. The boys were extremely cooperative, in great moods, and each day was fairly consistent. Because of this honeymoon period, I got it in my head things were "normal" and "easy" around here. What I forgot is that all phases pass, and we are in a different phase now. The boys have changed but I have not.
I decided to change my attitude. I'm going to accept this phase as it is - a phase where they are learning to be independent. And if they are going to be independent, they're not always going to do what I say when I say it. Everything is going to take a lot longer than I would like. A LOT longer. There is a lot less cooperation than I like. There is a lot more crying and whining than I like. There is a lot more fighting than I like.
It is an important lesson for me to learn. I don't want to waste these months wishing they were more cooperative, more obedient, and fighting less. I don't want to wish any phase away because I only get each phase once. Instead I need to learn how to enjoy each phase, even when I am exhausted and tired and frustrated and have no patience.
This morning, I tried to accept things as they are. Instead of wishing they would play nicely and stop fighting, I had them help me unload the dryer and the dishwasher. They loved it. Instead of getting frustrated they were taking forever to get down the stairs, I sat at the bottom waiting for them. They went a lot faster without having to stop to listen to me say, "Let's go." It's going to take some time but I feel this is the right path.
But damn, even with the attitude adjustment, this is a tough and exhausting phase with two.