The Force Is Strong With This One.

Five years ago, in a galaxy far far away, a baby boy was born. The council named him Jack…

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I can hardly believe it myself, but my little Jedi is five whole years old. How did that happen? In the past year he’s become more and more of a boy, and less and less of a baby. He gets irritated at the “baby” cartoons his sister watches and has started talking back in a way I hoped would never happen. Just the other day he yelled “Where are my clothes, minions?!” Minions? Is he referring to his father and I as his minions? How does he even know that word?

Jack is and always will be the boy who makes me smile ear to ear. He’s kind and sweet, and downright hilarious. His teachers tell me that Jack is always concerned with other people’s feelings. He’s always the mediator and peacekeeper. I’m told that he always listens and is always eager to learn. This is shocking to me, considering his somewhat disruptive behaviour at home. He’s the wild animal who jumps out of the car window instead of opening the door. He’s the kid who refuses to walk down the stairs, but prefers to ride the banister down. He’s the kid who has taken to “hulking out” when he’s frustrated. And yet, he’s the good kid at school? I’m so confused.

Five years went by so fast. I really can’t believe it.

When Jack blows out his birthday cake candles and makes his wishes for the perfect Lego set, Star Wars action figure or other weird toy I don’t quite understand the importance of, I will be thinking of my five wishes. Five wishes for my sweet five year old.

1. May you always be the peacekeeper. Continue to be the person who helps to fix problems instead of creating them. Always think of other people and try to see things from their point of view as well as your own. At the age of 5, you’re doing a great job at this so far.

2. May you always smile and laugh at the simple things in life. I know that as you get older you’ll have to deal with stress and sadness and even anger. But don’t let those negative things cloud your innate blue-sky personality. Your smile and laughter is contagious. Don’t ever stop sharing it.

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3. May you never lose your passion for random knowledge. One of my favourite things about you is how you can recite history and geography facts on a whim. You retain so much of the details and I think that’s important. Life is all in the details. Keep paying attention.

4. May you always be the brother and friend you are today. You’re one of the most loyal little humans I’ve ever met. I’ve watched how you care for both of your sisters and your friends and it makes me so proud. Be true to those few who will always stand with you.

5. May you always dance in the kitchen with your mama. Really, it’s a simple wish of mine. I never ever want you to stop that. You can be embarrassed by me in front of your friends. I get it. I’m old and therefore NOT cool. You don’t need to kiss me before you get on the bus anymore. I can handle that. But the dancing. I’m not letting that go.

Happy birthday to my #1 Jedi… The Force is strong with this one.

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But I was TOLD Things Would Get Easier…

A month ago, this was me…

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I spent each day for a week doing EXACTLY what I wanted, when I wanted to do it. I loved every second.

Fast forward to now. When I do NOTHING I want to do, ALL of the time. I do NOT love every second of it. I’m not complaining though. I understand that this is what it’s like this when you have kids. But really? Maybe my Costa Rica trip spoiled me, or maybe I’m right and these kids are really out to get me. I’m in the final stages of a weekend alone with the kids while Nick retaliates with a guys’ ski trip. While it hasn’t been nearly as bad as I expected, I AM DONE!! Seriously. My throat hurts, and I can tell you, it isn’t because I’m sick. If I have to yell “STOP FIGHTING!” one more time…

Let’s just say it’s been a long weekend without Nick’s back-up.

Yesterday I was at my mother’s house pawning “craft-time” off on her. I played Candy Crush on my phone while she busted out the glitter glue and paint with the kids. I’ve given up on trying to be the crafty mom. Screw crafts. In my opinion, it’s true that good moms do crafts with their kids. But Smart moms take them to grandma’s house. But I digress… My mom looked at me and said, “WOW, you have 3 KIDS now.” What she meant was that now I no longer have 2 kids and a baby. 2 kids and a baby wasn’t nearly as difficult as 3 talking-back, not listening, doing whatever the hell they please KIDS! It made me remember a conversation I had a couple of weeks ago, with a new mom. I promised her it would get easier. HA! I’m so full of shit. What I should have told her was that yes, soon you will master this new baby stage and be totally comfortable. But then you know what, it moves to the next level. A harder level. If you continue to have more babies, yes, you will catch on faster, become immune to sleep deprivation and get into the groove of babies. BUT, once they all start growing up…You’re screwed. Really. I think back on the “baby” days and I think, damn, what the hell was I even complaining about? Now I have to deal with attitude. I have to deal with disciplining them. I have to make sure they don’t turn into homicidal maniacs. Now I get to deal with school, kids at school and the behaviours they pick up from those kids. As an example, Jack came home from school singing about “ball-sacks in your mouth.” What the hell is that all about? Do I even want to know?? Suddenly, I’m having to think about parenting, and not just meeting their base needs. Yes, I still feed them, bathe them, and occasionally wipe a few butts, but now… Now I have to put thought into how I’m going to make sure they grow up to be functioning adults. I have to figure out how to keep them off of the Jerry Springer Show!! It’s crazy overwhelming, and I’d argue completely unfair. As if the first two years of insomnia and ass-wiping wasn’t enough work… Now I have to use the brain that has been turned to mush from too much Treehouse? Uh-oh.

I have heard so many different tricks of the trade when it comes to kids. Most of it has been complete crap. After all, I can recall a few people telling me that it gets easier the more kids you have. Yeah. I call bullshit on that one! I take all of the advice I’ve heard, and I pour myself a glass of wine and laugh. Everyone has different kids, different lives, and way different experiences. No one knows what the hell they are doing, so I’m not going to pretend I do. Instead, I’ll just try my best, and hope that none of my kids turn into crazed lunatics, thieves, or stars of ridiculous reality TV shows. So, to my dear friend with the new baby. Yes, it’s hard but it doesn’t last forever. If you’re ever in a stage where you think you can’t take another day…Just wait a week, and BAM! a whole new level to master. You’ll figure it out, we all do. Hang in there.

As for me… Right now I’ll remind myself to enjoy these kids, while they’re kids…. I’m already getting comments about the hell that the teen years bring. Hooray for parenting!!

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