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A DAY AT THE POOL



Last week was a serious whirlwind. After being out of town for two weekends in a row and having plans every single day of the week, we headed to the pool friday morning to meet friends. I gave Matilda her first french braid. She was so excited to go swimming with her friends. We got to the pool and Matilda absolutely loves the water. It was a wee bit chilly, keeping a lot of us ladies comfortable in our lounge chairs. Matilda jumped right in chattery teeth and all. She was swimming to the other end of the pool, kicking with her friends, and then... I could see the unwinding happening right before my eyes. She started acting really busy (trademark tired sign), taking the other kids' toys, taking hats off people's heads, whining, crying, begging people for their food even though I had brought a pretty amazing lunch (if I do say so) with her favorite foods. Can we talk about "bars" for a minute? That child wants one if anyone has them, it's like nothing else can compare. They always seem to appear at play dates. I bring 'em too but gravy the power of the bar.

Back to my child's meltdown. You saw this coming? Before I knew it we were in full blown tantrum "I don't like you" mode. I left barely covering my butt with my towel, child on my hip screaming in my ear, two bags on one arm, you know the drill. Pretty sure the landscaper got a real nice view of my pregnant rear. I threw my child in the car seat, ripped off her swimmies, started the car and drove home in silence to, "I'm sleepy" "I'm so tired" "Wahhhhhhhhh." I literally almost went into a pregnant rage when the driver of a Mercedes honked at me when I went to fix my hair at the stop sign. It was a hot mess.

At the risk of vulnerability (do I ever shy away from that?), as a mother I struggle with other people judging my child or me. I know that Matilda is a tender, warm, loving, hilarious, intoxicating child, but sometimes people see her very worst. We had a breakfast date the same week that went up in flames. I don't judge other moms or their kids but I hear people doing it and I say karma's gonna get you on that one. I just feel fiercely protective of my child and at my wit's end at the same time. We had really coasted for the front part of three and then the sky fell. I know, I know I'm sure it has something to do with the baby/age/me working from home. I've recently taken on some more freelance work which is amazing but sometimes I struggle with juggling it all. I don't have any help and last week I took her to mother's morning out and I felt like a new person. I felt like it was so good for both of us.

Have you been right here where I am? Care to share some sage wisdom? Hugs in advance.

13 comments :

  1. don't know anything about bebes... but *thank you always* for vulnerability - you're inspiring!

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  2. If it helps at all...I used to get so embarrassed when my oldest had these meltdowns. However, when #2 came along, they didn't bother me as much. Not sure why...maybe I finally realized that it's just a a part of normal toddler life and anyone with kids who pretends theirs doesn't do the same is not an honest person. Plus when your family starts multiplying you get used to a certain amount of controlled chaos so to speak.

    I once read that kids in the middle of the tantrum who see their parents "lose it" tend to spiral even more out of control. Seeing you in control of yourself and the situation actually helps bring them comfort. That article (wish I could find it!) really helped remind me that ultimately I AM the parent and in control even if the are screaming at the top of their lungs!

    I always feel better when I get some time apart from my kids too. As much as I adore them, I need time to myself to recharge and give them my best too!

    xoxo

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  3. First of all, if anyone judges you or your child when a meltdown occurs, they either don't have kids, or they paid for someone else to raise theirs. We've all been there, and it sucks. Especially when it strikes out of nowhere. :( Schedule disruption seems to be my wee one's biggest trigger, along with utter exhaustion (and she's five now). Heck they're two of my meltdown triggers too! The good news is that the older they get, the better communication gets, which ultimately helps the whole situation.

    And by the way, Mothers Morning Out days are good. It's good for you, and good for Mathilda. She needs to see how other kids act & play, and how other adults interact with her. It's amazing how one statement from your mouth gains weight and authority after it's heard from a respected teacher's mouth!

    First and foremost, you are her mother. You know what is best no matter what other people may or may not think. It is hard. And if it starts to feel easy just know you're due for another challenge. ;)

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  4. Love the pictures. I guess I was crazy enough to get in & make the post - I'm surrounded by pink cuteness!

    We are all in the same parent/toddler boat, we can make it through this!

    Love ya!

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  5. Girl! oooooooooooooo I've been there and boy is it rough each and every time! I am in my third round of age 3.5 and it has been the toughest age each time with each child! hang in there! I laughed at the thought of you trying to just get outta dodge and wishing you could cover your pregnant fanny! Soooo know that feeling. Just know you aren't alone!:)

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  6. You're an adorable mama and have nothing to worry about.

    As you know, little Jude is at the center of my heart. I've had a special bond with him since the day he was born, and up to this point, I've found everything he's done adorable. But now . . . he is TWO.

    I'm telling you Lesley, he is TERRIBLE. And he has excellent parents, a nanny who loves him, a delightful older brother, and pretty much anything a child could ask for. But none of us can control the little monster he's become in his toddlerhood.

    The only thing you can do is roll your eyes and laugh it off, in my opinion. I've told myself, in tougher moments, that although I can't control Jude, I can control my reaction to him. I'm a believer in firmness (time outs, ignoring, room time, etc.) and I do think that helps him to realize that in a way, he makes choices about how he behaves.

    Don't doubt yourself. You're the best!

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  7. I love kids at a pool. They always look so happy!

    http://fromfreyawithlove.blogspot.com/

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    1. By what I can see..you're a great momma! I know I was a handful when I was a kid, most girls are. I don't think you should fret :)

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  8. Sweet girlies, we had so much fun! It stinks that you guys had to bail, but it gives Til the message that you're not putting up with it. So good for you for being strong and following through.

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  9. First. Thank you for brightening this gloomy Monday morning with babies in swimsuits, seriously is there anything cuter?

    Second. I think we should create a pact, something like, "The No-Judgement Moms" or something to that affect. Because we have all been there or will be there, we've all felt the critical eye for not doing exactly what every parenting book/guru says we should be doing. Or maybe there was no eye at all and we just felt like there was. None of us our prefect, even those moms who have full time help are struggling to spend enough quality time with their children.

    The thing about juggling, which we also all do, is that in order for the juggling to stop, a ball has to fall. I hope that metaphor makes sense. Motherhood is about balance - working is just as important for nourishing yourself as it is for setting a good example for Matilda. I hope you keep taking her to MMO, you both gain from it.

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  10. First, make sure you realize you are not alone in the experiences of a growing child and being a mommy. We've all been there...all been embarrassed and it won't be the last. :-)

    With that being said, find a way for your child to be social outside of parent’s friends and grandparents, let her learn how to make her very own first impression on her own. Granted there is a risk of picking up a few bad manners, but those can be corrected as long as you catch them early. Oddly enough, it is a big weight lifted off of your shoulders, when you know she is some place safe and you can go home and get some productive work done for a few hours. You will be a much, more relaxed, ready to play mommy. Check out Vacation Bible Schools or even church pre-schools next year. They are usually relatively cheap and only half days. That will give her a chance to be her own little person and give you a much needed “time-out”. Good luck with the 3’s…enjoy them…their mouths get bigger as they get older. :-)

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  11. Don't get caught up in what people think about you or your child (because it doesn't matter and there is no way to know what someone is really thinking ;)) but just focus on your parenting in the moment. I realize that the moment that comes up is terribly inconvenient at times and not ideal but it's important to not let them "rule" the situation even though it may feel like they do. You are the parent and they are your child. Just focus on parenting and be free what others are thinking in the moment. :)

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