How Christmas Carolers Fix Everything

19 Dec

I am exhausted.

The past two days have been too much.  The boys and I are homebodies, mostly because I want them to sleep in their own beds for naps and also because I think it’s too hard to pack them up and take them places by myself.  I’m always weighing whether the amount of work it takes is worth getting out of the house and, if something doesn’t go well, if it’s going to end up being fun at all, for me or the boys.  Most of the time relaxing on the couch while they sleep seems so much better for all involved.  But, I would like to get out.  For the past few weeks, naps haven’t been very good.  They seem shorter and less consistent.  So yesterday, I thought I might try moving the boys to the coveted (by me) one nap schedule.  It’s a little early, but I thought they might get one longer nap and maybe that would be better for them and me.  Yesterday, it seemed to work.  I coaxed them into staying up a little longer in the morning and then they both took 2 hour naps.  But then we went to Dan’s parents’ house and tried to put them down for bed at the normal time.  It was very difficult to get Leo asleep (which never happens at night) and he cried until well after 8.  My nerves were shot.  The good news is that they both slept in a little this morning (after a brief wake up at 6:30).

Today, I had no choice but to do one nap because I signed up to go to a play date/Christmas cookie exchange in the morning.  Last night, I almost decided not to go, but what was I going to do with five dozen gooey chocolate butter cookies?  So, we went.  And I’m glad we went.  I met some cool twin moms and Leo really enjoyed himself.  My usually standoffish guy was all up in everyone’s business and so happy not to see a gate in site.  He hauled that tiny little butt all around the house.  He even borrowed other twin moms’ legs to practice standing.  Dominic wasn’t so happy about it.  He was a little scared and unsure and later I noticed that he is cutting a new tooth, so that might have had something to do with it too.  When we left, the boys fell asleep in the car.  I got them home and thought I would slip them into bed, but they woke up.  I fed them some lunch and then tried to put them down.  It turned into a two hour battle.  Leo kept standing up and he can’t get down, so every ten minutes or so I had to go in and gently lay him back down.  Dominic pooped, so I had to take him down to change him, then he leaked pee all over, so I had to do it again.  Leo finally slept for 45 minutes, but Dominic was crazed and couldn’t get himself to sleep and wouldn’t stop fidgeting when I rocked him.  I finally brought him downstairs and fed him a bottle thinking he might fall asleep while taking it.  He didn’t.  (I’m getting stressed again just typing this.)

As it turned out, Dan had to work late, so I was on my own for the rest of the evening and it was bath night.  Sigh.  I put them both to bed early and they fell hard.  I’m just hoping against hope that they sleep well and don’t get up early.  The best part about this whole (boring) story is that last week, I decided that I should really stop being stressed out if the boys don’t eat or sleep as much as I think they should.  I realized that whether I was stressed out or not, the same thing was going to happen, so I may as well not get stressed, right?  It’s a choice.  But, today, geez.  I really shouldn’t complain.  I have it so good in so many ways.  The boys are great night sleepers.  I was just reading a few old blog posts when I was excited that the boys were sleeping until 4am.  Ugh.  Plus, even bigger picture.  I have my boys.  I love these babies so much it hurts and I have so much guilt when I feel frustrated about being a mother.  But, guys, it’s really hard.  And the worst part is that there are no right answers.  Lots of guessing and hoping that you are doing the best thing, but no absolute right answers.  And you are so tired.  And you miss your independence.  Okay, I’m talking about me now.  I always thought it was so corny when people said it was the hardest job ever.  It’s so hard.  And you fail at something almost every day.  Okay, I do.  I fail.

So, I’m crying on Dan’s shoulder tonight, feeling so tired and so bad at this when outside we hear something in the distance.  We realize there are a bunch of kids on our street carrying on and half-singing Christmas carols.  Then, it gets closer… and closer.  Until they are most certainly at our front door.  My eyes are puffy and Dan and I just look at each other.  For a minute I think, maybe they’ll just go away.  But they get louder.  Then I think, what if they wake the babies?!  I look at Dan and he says, “You look fine.  Come on, let’s go listen to them.”  I wipe my eyes and we go downstairs and open the door to see a small group of adorable college students singing.  A little sense of peace came over me.  A gentle reminder of my favorite piece of parenting advice.  This is just a season.  Each season will pass and, from what I hear, they pass quickly and before you know it, your sweet little boys will be leaving for college and you will long for the days that they did not nap.  You will long for the days that you held their wiggly squirming bodies in your arms.  Okay, I will.  I will miss this.

Sleep in heavenly peace, little boys.  Mommy will be here for you when you wake up in the morning, no matter what time that is.

2 Responses to “How Christmas Carolers Fix Everything”

  1. Jennifer December 19, 2013 at 10:09 pm #

    I totally feel you!! Sleep regressions and pattern changes are normal at this age too. I also covet nap time. And there are a lot of days i dont leave the house because you just cant pick up and go. Merry christmas!!

  2. Sasha December 20, 2013 at 3:05 am #

    Laurie, you are a great mom with best little buddies. Dont be so tough at yourself, sometimes things dont go the way we want but it always turns right :) Filipko asks to be breast-feeded during the night approximately 30 times, during the day he sleeps hardly 2×30 minutes and Lubos is still abroad but I am so thankful to have such a sweet active little boy. I always say to myself that I had 4 years of longing and waiting for that miracle to take a perfect sleep every night so now I can enjoy maternity :))) kisses and hugs to you and boys, I know you are the best mom!

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