I love my kids, I really do, but sometimes they drive me crazy. I just want to lock them in a closet or drug them and lock them in their room so I can take a nap. They’re 2-nearly-3 years and 13 months, so this is definitely frowned upon. As if it would be better if they were older, but whatever.
They’re not bad boys, far from it. Asher is a REALLY good kid. Like, compliments from people who watch him for us every time. He was in the hospital overnight in January and the nurses complimented us on his behavior. Elijah is also really good. He’s easy going and only cries when he has a need (food, diaper, clothes, holding). Even when sick, this kid has a toothy grin for you. Yesterday he was vomiting at FKO and STILL smiling. So, I’m spoiled. When they do act up or get bored or whatever, I want it to stop and go back to normal.
It was probably a mistake to have them 21 months apart. In my defense, that wasn’t actually the plan. We intended to have them closer to 30 month apart, hoping Asher would be at least 2 before his younger sibling was born. Turns out I’m crazy fertile and a week after we started trying *bam* baby. Two insane deliveries prove that my body knows what to do when it comes to birthing babies.
The worst part about having two kids close together, though, isn’t the mountain of diapers and logistical nightmare of going anywhere at any time, but the comments I’ve gotten from people. One woman came into my place of work when I was pregnant with Elijah, saw I was about 8 months along with a toddler in the other room and seriously asked me “What were you thinking?” in an incredulous voice. Did she want me to say “Oh, this was an accident,” or “You’re right, I think we’ll put this second one off for a bit.” Jerk. I was so stunned someone was that rude (this is West Texas where that doesn’t happen often) that I just kind of smiled and ignored it while I finished processing her payment. She realized her gaffe a minute later and gave me a non-apology. You know “I’m sorry, but…” Just be quiet. You’re making it worse.
So for the last 13 months, I’ve changed an average of 3 dirty diapers a day, changed 8 wet diapers a day, and had countless snuggles, giggles and kisses. Asher LOVES Elijah, which makes my overwhelmed-mama’s-heart happy. Before Elijah was mobile, Asher loved to get down on the floor and lay with him. Now that Elijah can stand, Asher will body-slam hug him and knock him down. Asher loves to kiss his and hold his hand when we're in the car. He comes running to tell me when Elijah is crying. He always shared the graham crackers, making sure that they each get one. Now if I could get him to help change diapers and make dinner, we'd really be on to something.
He does help where he can, though. He get SO excited about starting the dishwasher that if he's throwing a tantrum or hiding from us for some reason, I just have to say "Asher, it's time to start the dishwasher" and that kid comes running. He knows where the soap is and dutifully tells me when it's empty...even if it's not actually empty. He loves to push the buttons and hear the whir as it kicks on. Woe is me if I use the delay feature. Sometimes I let him start it, then stop it and restart with the delay. And his reward? A coin. I can give him the same penny 14 times in a row and he doesn't care. A coin is a coin is a coin.
Elijah helps too, somewhat. When I'm cooking or cleaning in the kitchen, he wants to be there with me. He circumnavigates the room, stooping to pick up food that he and his brother have dropped (I don't sweep nearly enough) and munches on it, happily chattering all the time. He loves to be present when I'm cooking, which makes me think maybe he'll be a cook later on. That'd be great since I hate cooking. I'd happily turn those reins over to him any day. Well...maybe when he's like 14 and can actually cook something beyond toast and mac and cheese. Though I do enjoy toast and mac and cheese.
So when we have the days where Asher is constantly sitting on Elijah and Elijah is constantly crying to be held and the house feels like it's falling down around my ears and I'm so exhausted all I can do for dinner is have Austin pick something up or order something in, I remember that tomorrow, when they get up, Elijah will have that huge toothy grin for me, Asher will say "Oh! Good morning Mommy!" and it will be better. Really, if I can hold on for a few minutes during those rough patches, I'll likely get a grin from Elijah and a sweet word from Asher. Because my boys are awesome.