With my new job, I now get to enjoy extra days off. It’s a beautiful little concept called Exchange Holidays! That gives me 3 extra holidays a year! Boo-yah! My first official exchange holiday was last Friday (Good Friday) so I am coming off of a 3 day weekend.
And now I need a few days to recover from it.
CJ and I basically saw this weekend as a chance to hammer out more work on the house. Isabella saw it as a chance to put mom to the test. The combination resulted in aching muscles, tired eyes and frazzled nerves.
Let’s start at the beginning, shall we?
CJ and I are dividing the house work up based on ability. He has the knowledge and skills to do lots of construction type work, having been in the biz for 30+ years, and I am really good at bossing him around. This weekend, he was focusing on getting our bedroom/bathroom finished up, along with various other things (including an unexpected plumbing project). I was going to be the one in charge of Munchkin so that he could work. I was really looking forward to spending the extra time with Isabella. Boy did I get a taste for what being a stay-at-home parent is like!
Friday was good. We played, we had snacks, and we ran to the store for some miscellaneous stuff. After she awoke from her nap, we went outside as it was a nice afternoon. She tried to help me pick up Samson’s dog poop using her bare hands. Luckily I caught her before she touched anything! I must have looked like a freak to my neighbors as I frantically waved my arms in the air and yelled NO!NO!NO!NO!
I can hear then now, “Gee Bill, I wonder what kind of interpretive dance Sarah is doing over there? Huh. Oh, maybe she got stung by a bee…”
I decided to take Munchkin to the park since it was so nice and neither of us wanted to go in. After playing for a few minutes, she decided it would be super fun to push the stroller so I let her push it all the way back home (about 2 blocks)!
Saturday is when the trouble started. I think Isabella has a little cold, or else she’s getting some teeth, and she was really crabby.
The morning was fine and she had an epic 2.5 hour nap after lunch. When she woke up we went back outside to play. It was a colder day though so we couldn’t stay out as long. She wanted to pick up flags. A few weeks ago CJ staked little flags out in our yard to mark the sprinkler heads so that the aerator guys wouldn’t run over them. Then he had Isabella go out and help him pick them up. Child labor is a beautiful thing. She remembered that and wanted to do it again, only there weren’t any to pick up! Well, ok, there was one. So I let her go out front and get that one but I wouldn’t let her run around with it for fear she’d fall and jab herself in the eye. Then I’d have to rush her to the hospital and she’d end up wearing an eye patch. I was not about to have her become a pirate and go blind on my watch!
She got very angry that she had to a) give the flag up and b) go inside. The cry-fest lasted for about an hour, off and on. I had to make a storage run and I
asked begged CJ to come with. I was running on fumes and needed the extra help. I figured we could all go together, then stop and grab some chinese on the way back (food, not people). Crab Rangoon make everything better.
She whined/cried for most of the trip, partway during dinner and through her bath (which she normally loves). It took 30 minutes to get her to bed too. By the time all that was done, I was drained.
Easter Sunday started out great. We got up, had breakfast, did an egg hunt and Isabella got her Easter basket. It was getting to be about 10:30am and she was very tired. She started acting up. She wanted to be held and then she yanked on my hair. When I reprimanded her for it, she started crying.
That was all it took to break the dam loose.
She cried and cried and cried. For a solid hour. I tried everything and eventually just figured there was nothing I could do. I changed her in to her Easter dress (which I never got a picture of because of all the meltdown) and got her ready to go. Magically, a cure for her distress was found – hangers. Yes, that’s right, clothes hangers. In her teary-eyed daze, she wandered over to her closet and pulled out 2 hangers that were on the floor. She clutched those in her little hands and wouldn’t let go. She even took them with her to grandma’s house. Hey, fine with me. If I had known that, I would have given her that for Easter!
The rest of the day was basically more of the same. She had a few good hours here or there and then would break out in tears. We managed to get her through the egg hunt before laying her down for her nap. She was so beyond tired at that point that she refused to sleep. My mom had to use her super grandma powers to rock Munchkin to sleep. When she was finally down, a moratorium was put on the house that no one was to make a sound for fear she’d wake up. All the guys took that as their cue to nap too. Us women spent the time gossiping over cheese and crackers while the kids played outside. When Munckhin awoke, she went out and joined them.
Once we got home, she broke out in more fits and it again took about 30 minutes to get her to sleep.
By the end of the day, I was actually looking forward to going to work, just to get a break from the tantrums.
I tell ya what, I have renewed respect for my amazing husband who stays at home with Isabella every day. From the outside looking in, I get jealous that he gets all this time with our little darling while I’m at work dealing with deadlines and things. While he is lucky to spend so much time with her, and be a part of things I can’t, it’s not all fun and games and can be very exhausting. I definitely got a taste of that this weekend.
If only Arbor Day was an Exchange Holiday. I could really use another day off.
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