Places, Everyone

The acting out has begun in earnest.

It has been a relatively smooth couple of months, with only mild adjustment insecurities, but now? Whoa. Add my going too long between anxiety med refills and you have one wacky household.

Dylan, I believe, is trying to gather himself and mark out his boundaries and make sure of his place in the world. he needs a lot of snuggling, as do all three, and it’s difficult to accommodate that without a lot of rivalry.

Daphne is clingy and sweet and nurturing and also a hellacious tantrum thrower. She wants to be carried whenever possible, and on my lap or engaged in intense, face-to-face conversation at all times.

Logan is the same way conversationally, and also needs to be talking all.the.time. He is also fiercely protective of his morning snuggle time and will skip breakfast if he has to in order to get enough to allow him to leave the house.

So basically, everything would be jake if I grew two more heads and just sat in the big yellow chair all day long, buried under all three children, listening with a set of ears and eyes on each child, answering questions and mediating mommy land wars.

If I could clone myself to hop back and forth to the kitchen to fetch drinks and snacks and clean up crumbs and spills, we’d have it made. And she’d also have to make sure that the 2.3 garments each that each child will wear at the moment are always clean and within reach.

Who will cook? We’ll have TV dinners every night! Breakfast is trickier. It lasted two hours this morning because no one really believed me that I would take their food away if left unattended for a stretch. Each time I removed a plate or bowl, they had to negotiate to get it back, and that was just so not worth the effort on either end. I felt like a meanie all morning.

As if I weren’t already wound up like a winch on an oil rig, I took them to see “Madagascar” at noon. Good golly. They were great getting seats and sitting still for the first hour, and then Dylan had to pee. Fine, right? Nope.

I can’t go into the Men’s, and there is no way I’m sending him in there alone, so he comes with Daph and me to the Women’s. You have never seen such an indignant little boy. He refused to pee ever again and certainly not in the ladies’ room, dancing with need all the while. Being the mean mom that I am, I barricaded the stall door and waited. He eventually caved in but was NOT happy.

And poor Daphne. “Mommy, I need a smaller toilet.” “Honey, these are the only ones we have right now.” Every time she’d wiggle onto the seat and get to a comfortable position, the automatic flushing mechanism would go off and scare the bejeebus out of her. “Mommy, make it stop!” “You have to sit still, honey. It flushes every time you move because it thinks you are getting up.”

And it all made for a very awkward adventure, as she tried to see what she was doing and I tried to simultaneously angle her torso so she wouldn’t spray the room and also keep her brother from escaping under the stall door.

I was banking on naps when we got home, but, well. I don’t even want to talk about it.

And then Daddy stopped by to say hello and the acting up began all over again. After lots of tears and demands, he came in and asked Daphne if she wanted to go with him to pick Molly up from the groomer’s. She of course said yes, and off they went.

Meanwhile, I didn’t hear the boys anywhere. They were playing in the yard, but they weren’t there anymore. They weren’t down the block and their bikes were still here. Fuck a duck.

After fifteen minutes it occurred to me to call Gil. “Did you by any chance take EVERYONE with you?” “Yep.” “OK, could you maybe tell me that next time because I have been freaking out, looking all over the place for them and I am a little agitated as it is, and I am going to have a hard time calming down now. I need to know where the children are, especially on my time.” “Ooookay.” I could hear the klaxons blaring in his head… “psy-cho, psy-cho, psy-cho…”

Yeah, that’s right. You try two days with no coffee and three with no anxiety meds, OK, buddy? I didn’t ask for this. I am trying to make things BETTER. But when things go wrong, I find myself fraying at the edges and crackling with strange and unsettling energy and not coping well with the screaming tantrums and the constant fighting.

I love my children. I love my life. I love myself. I love our home. I can’t even imagine what this would be like if all of those things were catawampus. Right now, it’s just the wiring in my brain and the adjustments the children are making to their worldviews.

I know we will be OK in the end, but boy do I hate feeling like such a fruitloop in the meantime.

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