From the beginning, my girls have always been polar opposites in every which way. Physically and emotionally. My oldest would go into her crib at night and play herself to sleep for hours without complaining. I remember being annoyed that we were never technically “off the clock” until we knew she was knocked out completely. Hours. But then came her sister years later who made me long for the easy days of monitor monitoring. She needed to be held and rocked and fed to sleep, when she felt like it, long into the night. Later on, wanting bubbas of milk throughout the night. Who grew in to having screaming night terrors running through the house until she ended up on our bedroom floor anyway. Who needed three hours of storytime and a stack of books to ever fall asleep on her own. Who now goes to bed without a problem at 8 years old but still sleeps with me. But? We all sleep. And, after a million years, bedtimes are fairly quiet within the house. Finally. For a bit.
On the other side of the coin, I can’t, by any stretch of my imagination, picture my little one ever inflicting the same the pain, headache, stress, worry and fights that her older sister did throughout those tough teen years. They are both pretty mellow these days, but I know realistically we are headed right back into the belly of the unknown days of puberty, middle school, mean girl drama and rebelliousness all over again. And soon. Just as it seemed to end with one. As with all things, time will tell.
…And the talking. Always, Always. As could be guessed, it’s often all but impossible for me to keep up. I miss a lot within retellings of school and the tiny details that mean everything. About everything. Not picking up intonation that needed my attention. Being 100% present in focus in order to gain 50% of the information and emotion from my girls. That alone has exhausted me since being a parent. But we have gotten through it. And our Normal will always be exactly that.
My oldest is now a woman of few words. Raising her own little sleep inhibitor and future firestarter. One day, not too far off, he will be running his mouth nonstop and burying his parents neck deep in Legos just like my youngest daughter is still doing to me on a daily basis. I figure this same kind hearted, little daddy’s girl will just about be packing away her Pokemon cards and distancing herself from me for Tweening right around the time, her nephew, E.J. is putting together his first endless rambles and operating from a bottomless source of energy. In turn, he will probably be steeped in hormones right as she is considering having her own babies. After her difficult years are hopefully behind her and she reattaches back to me as her older sister has. Now. Again. Finally.
The stages will continue to cycle on. Either leapfrogging one another, or in the perpetual motion of a circular relay race. I don’t know how much of it I’ll get to experience or see. But I was feeling grateful today that, for now, we seem to be living in this ideal 3 Perfect Days. Where everyone is sleeping. Everyone has manageable feelings. And everyone is together without distance. I can’t know how long it will last. As with every stage, time will tell. And we will get through it all. All over again.
Be well, Friends