This past Sunday I had the pleasure of watching my two grandbabies while my daughter worked her usual 12 hr shift. This turned out to be an eye opening whirlwind of an experience.
One would think things would go quite well, our daughter and her two cherubs live with us after all, so I have ready access to ALL of the things. I have swinging things, bouncing things, feed/change them things and play things. Even more arrogantly I thought “I myself have managed to keep alive four children, 3 into kidulthood…I got this!” SPOILER: I did not have this.
Breakfast time alone was a warning as to what the day would hold. The toddler didn’t want to eat his usual cereal but was willing to eat an apple which I promptly peeled and provided him. Meanwhile the 5 month old woke up, so I changed her diaper and dressed her for the day, only for her to have a near blow out of stool as is so common with breast fed babies. While I’m changing her for a second time, my husband provided the toddler with some Greek yogurt with frozen blue berries. When I returned to the kitchen, said 1 yr old toddler was enjoying the way the juice from frozen blueberries in the yogurt worked as a perfect paint medium across my kitchen table. Picking and choosing my battles, I focused on thawing a bag of breast milk for the baby who is now crying heavily because it isn’t heating fast enough for her now starving tummy.
By the time their hardworking mama returned home that evening, my husband and I felt tired and ragged. Carolyn looked around the house which now looked like a small tornado had made its way through earlier in the day and asked with a worried look “how did it go?” We realized in that moment we owed our dear daughter an apology for all the times we were annoyed with her for all the times she had failed to do her part around the house on her days off. We need these days, these days that remind us just how difficult it is to juggle the demands of high energy, little tyrants along with all the other daily tasks!