Remembering to be Grateful on the “Long Days”

One of Those “Long Days”

Today is one of those “long days.” The husband has to work a baseball game tonight, so he won’t be home until late. Normally, about dinner time and bath time I look at the clock and take a deep breath knowing that soon daddy will be home and it’s no longer zone defense but back to man to man – two on two; however, with a late game tonight, I will have to skip that deep breath and truck on along to bath time. A quick pause, can we seriously praise single parents!! They are certainly rock stars in my book, that’s for sure!

Example of a Previous “Long Day” in our Household

During one of these long nights not too long along, one had a fever while the other one was throwing up in the bathtub, which meant our entire bath time routine was out of whack. Routines are our lifeline around here. With two little ones, I have to stick to them, or I’d be put in a home. Especially when both of your little ones appear to be a little, ok a lot OCD and Type A. Sorry boys, you get it from both of us. You had no hope.

Normally I have jammies and diapers in the bathroom so I can get one child out and dressed while the other one plays in the tub for a few more minutes. Heaven knows if I left my daredevil two year old in the tub for a few minutes without being in there, which I don’t recommend doing ever anyways, the bathroom would be a swimming pool with water everywhere, and he’d be jumping off the edge of the tub like it was a diving board. Better to just avoid any circumstance that could possibly include a trip to the ER.

Since I couldn’t follow our normal routine, that meant the older one sat naked in his rocking chair and rocked while I got the little one ready for bed. I put his jammies on and set him down on the floor, started dressing the other one, and then I heard the “baby” playing in water. Pause. I ran to the bathroom, and of course he had found the toilet. He was just standing there a splish splashing. Not only did he find the toilet, but there was a blood trail from the bedroom room to the toilet, so I’m asking myself what on Earth happened.

What Had Happened Was

Well what had happened was… his finger got stepped on and turned black and swollen from the blood underneath the nail awhile back. We had been waiting for the nail to fall off, but it just hadn’t gotten that far yet. Well, apparently the blood decided it was tired of being trapped under the nail and thought that night would be a great night to start oozing out. Hello blood trail. I got him a band aid and of course he chewed it off in under a minute flat. Someone in the medical field should really invent a way to stop a child’s finger from bleeding because band aids just aren’t a viable option with a one year old. Million dollar idea, someone run with it!

At this point, the older one also got to the toilet and pretended to smash his finger in there because he too had a “boo boo” and needed a band aid. I’ll give him points for associating that’s where the baby’s finger was bleeding, so he needed to go there too.

Let Your Conscience Be Your Guide

Seriously though, I needed some wine. I always ask myself if it’s inappropriate to have a drink in the evening before the boys go to bed, but I always immediately feel guilty for that. It’s that Catholic conscience of mine. Thanks Dad. His favorite phrase to my sisters and me growing up was, “Let your conscience be your guide.”

It would go something like this:

Me: Dad, can I go to this party?
Dad: Let your conscience be your guide.

Me: Dad, can I stay at this house after prom?
Dad: Let your conscience be your guide.

Me: Dad, I don’t think I’m going to youth group tonight.
Dad: Let your conscience be your guide.

Oh how I hated when he said that, but don’t doubt for a second that I don’t plan on using it myself when my kiddos get older. Clearly it was effective.

Back to the Story

Anyways, back to the story, I got both kids settled down and dwindled a few more minutes off the clock until the baby just couldn’t hold it together another minute without some milk. I picked him up, he’s pretty darn heavy, so I kind of carried him by his stomach in one hand and the milk in the other. Why is that important? Well, he threw up again. Yes, really.

We cleaned up and went to his room for bedtime. On nights that Chad isn’t home, the older one comes with me to to the baby’s room and sits in the glider with us until I lay him down. Sounds sweet and all, but normally I’m telling him to stop screaming, whisper and to sit down. That night was no different, eventually I was telling him those things, but in the brief few moments before that, it made the whole #jesusandwine night worth it.

Be Still My Heart

I’m cradling one in my left arm while he was drinking his bottle, and the other was sitting in my right arm. My big boy said, “twinkle twinkle star.” This is his favorite song. I sing it to him most nights, so again, points for associating baby’s bedtime with his own bedtime song. So, together we sang Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star. I looked down and baby boy was smiling up at us. Oh, be still my heart. Then, brother said, “happy birthday?!” Another top three favorite song of his, as this is the song sung while we brush his teeth. So naturally, we sang Happy Birthday as we tried to drift baby off to sleep, and again, he smiled. Doesn’t everyone sing Happy Birthday as a lullaby? That was about big brother’s limit of sitting and being sweet, so the loud talking and the standing in the glider began, which meant baby got tossed in bed quickly so I could get the screaming child away from him.

I put the two year old in his bed, and he said, “momma sit.” That’s the norm these days. He wants me to sit by his bed while he holds my thumb (this has been his comfort since he was born pretty much), so I do. While I’m sitting there, we said our prayers. As ready as I was to drink my wine and watch my shows, I knew deep down they wouldn’t always want to hold my hand and have me rock them, so I sat there just a bit longer than normal, and I quietly thanked God for choosing me to be their mom.

Bring It On

I know with another long night is ahead of us and me being outnumbered by the little ones, there will certainly be more #jesusandwine moments to document. Moments that will have me counting to five, or maybe ten so I don’t lose it; however whatever those moments may be, I know one thing for sure: I am certainly undeserving of those two, and oh so grateful they’re mine, so bring it on.