Sunday, November 20, 2011

Goals

On Wednesday, Wyatt and Zoe turned 9 months old.  It was an occasion marked by a few tears, some of which were from me.  It's hard to fathom, but they have officially been "outside" longer than they were "in".  Every day seems to be marked with some new discovery;  yesterday was Zoe's purposeful "Dada", while Wyatt turned his head and made eye contact with me when I called his name.  Both were equally magical, both were equally greeted with joy.  These moments are coming more rapidly as time marches on towards their first birthday.

As they change, our daily life changes.  We are still trying to find our stride with my return to work and our crazy schedules.  Every day has something going on it seems;  "humdrum" is hardly Sean's day in the Brave New World of the Logan household.  One way or another, it eventually gets done.  Even if whatever it is has to wait a week to be done on my days off, it gets done.  My house always seems to have that shaken, not stirred look about it; toys, shoes and bits of clothing (usually socks) strewn about, dishes (gah!) everywhere and piles of used bibs on the kitchen table.  Then there is the laundry.... oooh the laundry!  I plan to spend two days next week to do it all up.  Consecutively.  Without pause, except to feed myself, the children and use the bathroom.  I'm still not sure that will be enough time. 

It's hard to sometimes, but to get anywhere, we have to set goals.  However well meaning, however lofty, however completely batsh☠t insane, we have to at least try.  We simply have too much going on not to.  It's what I think of as Newton's Laws of Parenting:  each new skill they develop, each little nuance they perfect has an equal and opposite reaction from us. Intersecting nicely to this is Murphy's Law, which usually ensures we are scrambling around at the last minute trying to baby proof and avert disaster in general.

One of the latest things has been Zoe's mobility.  We are constantly trying to adapt to our little girl and her astounding (to us) physical prowess.  She is now slowly crawling on her hands and knees (but is still lightning fast on her belly).  She pulls herself up, sits and I have caught her taking a few tentative steps as she held onto the edge of the coffee table.  Last night I buckled them both in their swings and closed the gate, leaving them in the living room as I headed upstairs to get ready for work (my 5 year old was in the room and my husband was in the next room and checking on them every few minutes).  As I was getting dressed all I heard was "Hon?  Did you leave them both in the swings?"  Puzzled, I answered "Yes?", to be told "Well, they aren't now".  I flew downstairs, pulling my T-shirt on as I went, to find that Zoe had wiggled out of her swing and was trying to crawl into Wyatt's lap (who thought this was all hilarious).  It was a little freaky to say the least, especially as both swings were still moving.  Keeping her safe is going to be a big challenge, especially after the gate fiasco of last week:  the extra long gate that we had purchased almost fell on her and my eldest. Somehow in the process of me trying to catch it, I slipped, half fell and managed to step on her little hand.  She was fine, I was fine (eventually!) but that particular gate went back the next day in exchange for a wooden one that is bolted to the wall.  The first morning I shut the new gate, ran upstairs to grab something and came down to a little face squished against the wooden rails pleading for release.  So far then,  it is working just fine.

Wyatt's OT came out last week as well and did a little assessment on his progress.  He is pushing himself up on his hands occasionally and has added a little bit of pivoting on his stomach. He has managed a maximum of 90 degrees thus far.  He has also rolled over and over (uni-directionally and slowly) and in doing so has moved across the middle of the living room floor.  Our days of him staying put are rapidly coming to a close as well. With our current regimen of positioning and small resistance exercises, we hope to accomplish a few more goals with Wyatt:  sitting, pivoting 180 degrees, rolling to both sides and more developing more control with his upper body in preparation for crawling.  Vocally he seems to be just about right as he carefully imitates our sounds and expresses himself more freely with both his voice and his affect.  There is no time limit on these objectives.  Like just about everything with our little guy, they will be met in their own time.

I don't know about your school, but there is a ton of paperwork that comes home and lots of things that we have to sign and send money back for.  Milk.  Book fairs.  Fundraising.  It never seems to end.  To try and keep this organized, we have two (pretty) bulletin boards in the kitchen.  One is for my son's stellar artwork, the other is for all the papers from school.  Last week, we were trying to get an idea of how much money I had to go take out of the machine in order to send it with him.  As we were adding up our list, my husband adds "...and $15 bucks for their trip" and hands me a blue sheet that he had found.  Once again it seemed they were going to the Living Arts Centre for a theatrical presentation of some kind.  I tacked it up on the board and forgot about it as we were promptly distracted by other things.  The next morning I was gathering up things to send back to the school and could not find the permission slip portion of the trip paper.  I had the front sheet with the staple hole in it where the permission page had obviously been joined at some point, but not now.  I looked everywhere, but with bus time rapidly approaching, I quickly scribbled off the following note to his teacher:
"Dear ____,
We seem to have misplaced the permission slip for the upcoming trip to the Living Arts Centre.  Could you please send another one so that Quinn does not miss out? 
Thank you in advance,
Jen (Mrs.  Logan)"
That day I got a note back:
"Dear Mrs. Logan
Thank you for the note.  I am not sure what I should be sending home as we do not have an upcoming trip.  
Thanks, ____"
 Confused, I looked at the trip letter.  It was dated 2010. 

Facepalm.

Luckily, hubby had the parent-teacher interview the next day, not me. 

There are a lot of little niggling things that need addressing here and there... from little house repairs to putting up the Christmas lights to spending more one on one time with my eldest.  Little goals that range in importance from meh to good idea to absolutely. As you may have guessed, there is very little me time in there, except for what I carve out for myself on the computer or in the bathtub.  Getting more sleep is certainly on my list of well meaning tasks for myself.  The joke there is that it has been at the top of my list for over 10 years now.  I used to have terrible insomnia.  I would toss and turn and be unable to settle to sleep, unless I was completely exhausted or medicated.  Then I would only sleep for a few hours before waking up again.  Thanks to the kids, that is no longer the case. I can sleep anywhere, anytime... it really doesn't matter.  If I sit still for more than 10 minutes, I am out whether I like it or not.  I've gone from having bouts of mind numbing insomnia to narcoleptic fits.   That's where the Newton's Laws of Parenting (bisected by Murphy's Law) come in again.  The more likely I am to fall asleep, the more likely one of my kids is to start crying and needing attention.  It never fails.  You could set your watch to it.

Our goals generally walk that razor's edge between reality and way the hell out there.  Getting through some weeks is like trying to assemble a giant jigsaw puzzle where the pieces keep changing shape and you have to use your toes.  It's next to impossible some days, where others seem childishly simple.  I'm still trying to come up with an answer to "I don't know how you do it".    I have yet to figure that one out, but I think goal setting has a lot to do with it.  The trick to that is to let it flow.  We try not to get too rigid as that will only raise our anxiety level and make our house an unhappy one.  Instead, we dial it back a bit and get the most important things done.  Trying to outthink the little buggers is also exhausting so we try and stay a little bit ahead so that everything is as easy as possible.  It works with things like baby food, not so much with the clean clothes.  As a result, the house is a mess, but dinner is in the crock pot.  The children are dressed properly and clean, we are generally not.  I may not have the whole Monday is library day and the milk money has to be back Thursday which is the same day as "Sharing" (show and tell), but dammit, one or two or all of us are at the bus stop twice a day and on time.  We're also a funny, happy, silly bunch that genuinely love one another. That goal, at least, we seem to have met without a problem.

2 comments :

  1. We are working on the exact same things with our Wyatt! Sitting is coming slowly, but surely. Yesterday, he sat upright for about 3 seconds before he teetered over to the side. LOL. But that's a great improvement from even just a few short weeks ago. It's amazing how you can wait and wait for something, then one day realize, its there! Glad to hear he's doing so great and thanks again for sharing your lives with us!

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