My husband and I learned with our first, that when a baby is taking a nap and sleeping extra well, you should never, ever, ever mention that outloud.
As soon as one of us would comment “Wow, Baby has been sleeping for 2hrs, that’s amazing” our little lovely would wake up.
10 Years later, this is one of the hard and fast rules we have in our relationship. NEVER comment on how well a nap is going.
And I am going to add to that.
NEVER comment on how well the kids are behaving, or how well everything is going.
I did that on friday. I soaked in the happiness of my “more mature” children. I exclaimed over how well they are getting along, and yesterday, that bit back at me.
And much like a shark to blood, kids can smell fatigue in parents. And we were tired.
Yesterday was a struggle from the moment our feet hit the floor. And when you mix miserable kids with cold, damp, foggy weather, it is a perfect storm of horrible.
Constant arguments, massive 4year old meltdowns and moody tweens set our teeth on edge. As the minutes in the day ticked by, dad & I dug deep to find the magic key to turn our family back into the charming, helping people we were used to.
At our breaking point, packing up the car, moments after the last extraordinary scream from the preschooler, they all found their groove.
Sitting together in the car (either scared for their lives because of how “done” their parents were) they all played and hung out happily.
And dad and I took a moment.
We inhaled the silence. We shook off the disaster of a day. We attempted to refresh our patience, for the potentially long night ahead.
Our family isn’t perfect, and never will be, and despite their getting older and more responsible, they will still be a nightmare sometimes.
My hope is that the rough days are fewer than the good, and that as the days go by we have a little variety in the bad behaviour. (If I have to have another fight over the slime I left on the cookie as I handed it to the preschooler. . . well I may just have a tantrum.)
And when we got home we poured a deep glass of wine, lit the fire and sent the kids “up to play” . We collapsed on the couches and gave ourselves up to the day.
The kids gave us our evening, in peace, so maybe there is some hope for us after all?