Alone time- what’s that?

My kids and I had dinner at my Dad’s tonight. He and his wife must think I have a bladder infection or something. I used the bathroom three times in four hours. It just occurred to me why: alone time.

In the last few weeks, I can count on one hand how many times I’ve done anything by myself. You’ve never lived until you’ve peed with a toddler sitting in your lap. So, tonight, with adults ready and waiting, I handed off my children every chance I could get to use the bathroom, just to have a moment of peace.

I know I say this a lot, but… it’s not that I don’t love and cherish every moment with my kids. They are the best three kids in the entire universe. They’re smart, funny, sweet, demanding, interrupting, sometimes violent and, at times, emotionally manipulative children. Gee, that went downhill fast. They really are great. But, they are kids. And sometimes, I just want to go in my room and cry.

My toddler is in the tantrum phase now. My preschooler is pushing every button (literally and figuratively) to see what he can get away with. And, my eight year old just pretends she can’t hear a single word that is coming out of my mouth. Can you see how this might add up to a frustrating day?

I try to ignore the toddler’s tantrums while setting limits with the preschooler and encouraging the second grader to respectfully acknowledge her elders when they are speaking to her. Notice that word “try?” It’s there for a reason.   Try-ing can be very trying.

My Step Mother asked me tonight when I get any alone time, you know, have a latte or just sit and read a book. I had to stifle a laugh. Does that actually happen for other Stay At Home Parents? I keep saying I need a better plan or schedule or something. The only somewhat silent time in my day is when the two older kids are at school or preschool and the baby is napping. A tiny problem- he usually does this while attached to my boob. Not much “alone time” there.

Tomorrow, I have a date with a friend. By date, I mean we’ll sit at her house and watch crap tv on Lifetime while eating a carton of ice cream or downing a bottle of wine while playing Scrabble. I will recharge my batteries for another long shift in Mom Land. And then, I will remember again to cherish the time I have with my babies before they’re all grown and gone. Or, at least, cherish the bathroom breaks I get when a family member is around to watch my kids…

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3 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. KalleyC
    May 05, 2011 @ 02:18:02

    No, you are not alone. My daughter is in the tantrum phase and how I wish I can pee without her sitting on my lap. I don’t know how other sahp do it, but there is no reading break, or coffee breaks here. I just try to make it through the day, and hope I can get her down early for the night.

    Reply

  2. Christy Cresap
    May 06, 2011 @ 23:14:57

    I was raised as an only child in a pretty quiet household. It was either quiet or there was really good music playing. I love solitude, and cherish quiet time, I need it to recharge. This upbringing left me happy but painfully unprepared for raising a pair of kids instead of an only child.

    They are constantly talking to each other…giggling, playing peacefully, conversing deeply (they are currently 3 and 6), blaming each other for something or skillfully pushing each others’ buttons seemingly for the sole secondary purpose of pushing my buttons, which must be deliciously entertaining for them when I do come unglued! What ever they are up to, there is noise involved.

    They are old enough now that I have instituted “quiet time” in our home. For about half an hour when I need some peace and quiet, everyone must go to their own rooms and read a book or play (very) quietly with a toy. And God help them if one of them picks up a toy that makes annoying beeps and whistles durning quiet time when mom’s nerves are shot!

    I am thankful for any quiet time I do get while being painfully aware that soon they will be gone, and I will wish for one more day of the ages that they are now, they are so precious!

    Reply

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