@nicolebcheung said it best, "Our summer solstice parade is better than your summer solstice parade." Naked babies running around wild and who are stained red and blue by fistfuls of blueberries and raspberries, delicious meals, Target and Old Navy shopping sprees, pony rides, swimming for hour and hours, complete freedom, walks into the sunset, the world's greatest dress up armoire, and even some pole fitness adorned our week long mommy-baby trip in Wenatchee. I leave Cyndi's house feeling so thankful for what feels like infinite love that continuously pours out of her.
One of my favorite memories: It was evening, before the kid's bath time, and Annie was SUUUUPER cranky from so much fun in the sun and no nap. She smashed Jonah's finger in the door (of course while they were all goofing off) and then was smiling at me with her hands covering her eyes while I *attempted* some sort of discipline (who's not winging this parenting thing....?) Basically I told her she "was done" and it was bedtime for her. I shut the door while the other kids were getting ready for their bath. I was so frustrated with Annie by that point that I could have banged my head repeatedly against a brick wall. I went downstairs to get a cheese stick for Kate, and complain to a mom who had been there and done that - 8 times, mind you! - about what I was having to deal with right then (which included a very sad screaming Jonah because of a smashed finger and a sad screaming Annie by this point because I keep trying to put her in bed but she kicks at me and covers her eyes and isn't listening and then she is laughing at me and! and! AND! AANNNDDDDDDDDD!!!!!!!!!!!) and ALL CYNDI DID WAS LAUGH.
So much of my life was thrown into perspective in that moment. All that I fret about, the control I try to have, the chaos I try to manage, the tantrums I try to calm, the fighting I work to settle, the hitting, kicking, bugging, teasing, the "Annnnnnieee scremememing me...!!!!!" that Kate loves to cry about (as if she has never intentionally screamed at Annie to make Annie cry...)... All of it had never felt so menial. In the instant Cyndi laughed my whole life with kids flashed before my eyes and I saw clearly that I always have a choice to make: frustration or calm. I do not talk lightly about that! That choice is SO hard, especially past 4 pm.
Parenting is hard for me because I want to raise sweet, well-behaved children, but when and how do I demand that behavior when right now I really. just. don't. care. to fight for it? Or maybe, I don't have the energy to fight for it. I really just want to put them in their room, close the door, and walk away. When they don't stay there is when the war begins and I want to lose it. Many times I do let my girls' crankiness get the best of me, but I want to try harder at not letting it affect or control my emotions and actions. And I wonder, if they could see that their problem was never my problem, maybe they wouldn't continue to do the annoying things that deep down do get to me (like run around like crazy people when they are clearly exhausted and it's bed time and they're supposed to lay down and stay there). I can never clearly articulate my thoughts and feelings in words but all I'm trying to say is, "I want to laugh it off more, and self destruct less."
Anyway, life is perfect in Wenatchee, and here is the proof: