Friday, June 24, 2011

Waving the White Flag

There's this Japanese word that's been floating around in my head for the past couple of weeks. "Maitta!" It means "I give up" or "I'm defeated" and it pretty much summarizes my experience as a mom of three so far. Don't get me wrong, Stow is great. He sleeps well at night (for 4-5 hour stretches, which, frankly, is about how long I normally sleep anyway), and besides a fussy period in the late afternoon and evening, he is extremely mellow. He does go through an unbelievable amount of diapers--about 70 a week, but I really can't complain.

The thing is, though, introduction of new baby has made Sky and Pink P absolutely insane. Sky's volume button has broken and he seems to only be able to express himself by yelling (always great when you've just finally managed to get the baby to sleep). Pink P has turned into the family hooligan. She attacks Sky without provocation and stealthy makes her way through all of our personal items, which she hides in various places throughout the house. Worse, she cries, loudly, at the drop of a hat and refuses to be pacified. Incidentally, her piercing cry is way too much for Sky's super sensitive sense of hearing and usually sends him straight to meltdown mode. I've been trying to keep them apart while they work through their various issues, but it literally takes only 30 seconds with both of them in the same room for everything to fall apart.

It's unfortunate that Stow's arrival essentially coincided with the beginning of summer vacation. Summer vacation can be rough, especially for Sky who needs structure. And, it's also unfortunate that Stow's arrival was immediately followed by two major illnesses for Pink P--first an asthma hospitalization and then pneumonia, both things she's never had before. Yes, I get that is supposed to be difficult when you have the "perfect storm." But that doesn't make me feel any better, particularly when I am not sure how long this painful period of adjustment will last.

What I really want to do is wave my white flag and yell, "Maitta!" I fantasize about a world in which I wave my white flag and escape to a place where there are no screaming and crying children and where I can go to the bathroom without a major catastrophe occurring in my brief absence. The thing I have learned about myself as a parent, though, is this: I will always live to face another day, and I have just enough fight in me to get through the battle at hand. It may not be pretty, and it certainly won't be quiet, but I'll be there fighting to the end.

I hope you'll humor me, though, when occasionally I yell "Maitta!" here in cyberspace I probably won't really mean it. I think...

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