Friday, April 30, 2010

It's About Time

Preston and I when he was about 2 weeks old

It's about 10:30pm on a Friday night.

A friday night, which I would like to add, that I would have rather of had a husband here to spend time with instead of playing single mom all day, but instead he is off on a scouting adventure with a bunch of 11 year old cubscouts. (Thanks babe for fulfilling your church/community callings, but I won't lie that sometimes I wish you would be a little less diligent. So shoot me for saying that.)

I feel like a terrible mother as it is. I'm 6 months pregnant and finally getting to a point where I'm starting to feel it. Like really feel it. My back hurts, my belly hurts, I'm tired, and everything seems to take way too much effort.

And I still have 3 months left.

So I tend to not be as good of a mother as I know I should be. I let my toddler watch way too many episodes of Dora the Explorer, he doesn't get out to the park as much as he really should, I don't pick him up enough, we don't go on enough stroller rides, and heaven knows that his meals could be better planned out with care.

So it was with a sense of guilt but excitement that I put my child to bed at the early hour of 7:15pm tonight in the hopes that I would be able to lay down and get some strain off of my heaving belly.

It was no surprise to me that around 8:00pm he was not asleep, but crying in his crib. Little wimpers turned to crying, which turned to full-on sobs.

So after letting him cry it out for about 10 minutes, I finally decided that I needed to console him back to sleep and went into his room. I picked him up and painfully carried this 34 pound 22 month old over to the rocking chair and rocked him for a bit.

I knew that he really was quite upset when I realized he had his bottle in his mouth but it was empty, yet he was still sucking on it. He never does that. If it's empty, he usually chucks it. So I knew that he was in need of some soothing which is why he was using his bottle nipple as a pacifier.

So I sat him up and laid him upright towards me with his head on my shoulder. He snuggled right in. Oh how I love that, because he is so not a snuggly kid. So when he does snuggle me, I feel so good. I feel like I am doing him some good, protecting him and providing some comfort. Even though he was squishing his little in-utero brother who was kicking back profusely, I really enjoyed the snuggle time with Preston.

I wiped the tears away from his cheek and we snuggled for about 30 minutes while listening to my lullaby music. While sitting there nestled together, I listened to the music that I so lovingly created and composed...for him. Each song brought back a memory of the story behind it, and why I wrote it.

I also realized that it was just he and I tonight. No papa. No husband. And it made me snuggle him even tighter knowing that he was my only human touch all night and I wanted to get as much as possible.

Eventually he started wiggling, and then eventually sat back and looked at me. He pointed to my shirt and jibber-jabbered some toddlerish undecipherable sentence and then gave me a big grin. He got down off of my lap and reluctantly started going over to one of his toys. He knew that he wasn't supposed to be playing right now because it was bedtime, so every step he would take he would look back at me to see if he could get away with one...step...more.

I just let him.

And instead of him making a run for the door, he was a really good boy and played with various toys in his room. The lights were still out, and the room was lit by a nightlight, a noisemaker, and a cd player. We both whispered back and forth. "Fast car" he would say as he played with his Lightening McQueen racecar. "Big ball", as he bounced a ball across the room.

After about 10 minutes of him playing with his toys, our whispers turned into regular voices. I then realized that this boy was no where near tired enough to go to bed.

So I finally let him out of his room.

We went and popped popcorn and sat on the couch in our bedroom (Mommy and Daddy's bedroom) and watched a movie, while snuggling under a quilt. He would grab a handful of popcorn and stuff it in his mouth and look up at me with the most excited smile and say "Corn!". I would acknowledge "Yes you are eating popcorn!" as he would dive another handful in and grab some. I had my waterbottle next to me, and he would say "Water." and I would pass him the water, then he would pass it back.

He was so excited.

My spirits lifted to. I went from feeling sorry for myself that I was having to be a single mom, alone and pregnant with a toddler while feeling remembering how much I loved this little boy of mine and I just needed to spend some time with him instead of trying to follow his schedule.

Stuffing our faces with popcorn and looking at each other with huge smiles and sharing a water bottle while movie-watching was one of those life moments where it seemed to be happening in slow motion. I knew that I would remember this little moment in years to come.

Finally, after we finished our bowl of popcorn and Preston started going for the kernals, I decided it was time to attempt bed again, considering it was now 9:45pm (2 hours passed his regular bedtime).

He was only too happy to take another bottle of milk, climb into my lap with his blankie, listen to more lullabies, and eventually get placed in his crib for the night.

And I haven't heard a single peep from him since.

I learned a valuable lesson tonight. Just like the Mormon advertisements say, "Family: It's about time". They are exactly right.

Preston and I when he was about 2 months old


Carolyn said...

What a precious experience....thanks for sharing. I remember a few of those tender times with you and your helps to soothe out all of the other stressful times when they are pulling the toilet paper roll through the house, or emptying the baby powder bottle on the floor right where they had earlier dumped a bottle of olive oil. But, I wouldn't trade it for only get one chance to be a parent with young children. I miss those times.

The High Family said...

Thank you for sharing this story! I can't tell you how many times I've felt overly stressed (especially while pregnant with Kara AND the first year of her life!) with the kiddies. Your body and mind can only take so much and it's difficult to mother a toddler while being 6+ months pregnant. There will be plenty of "bad" days to come but with them are the special days that will last in your heart forever.

Keep doing what you are doing Jenni and the rest will all work out in the are an amazing mommy. Preston and Carter (yep, I've already named your unborn son! LOL--just kidding!) are so very lucky to have you. xoxo

Aby Runyan said...

Right-on to everything.

Email anytime:

luvs, aby

NelsonFam said...

Oh... I needed that story today. Anabelle has reflux and spends most of her days very uncomfortable and I feel like such a bad mom to Jace but then we little moments like you described and I know he we are all ok.