Flashback Friday: Blogs – Cheaper than Therapy — Abby Off the Record

Flashback Friday: Blogs – Cheaper than Therapy

by Abby on July 15, 2011

One of the great things about blogging for over 5 years is that I don’t have to rack my addled mommy brain to try and recall, say, what my firstborn was like at age 2. I can just look it up in my archives. And lo and behold, I found this post, which sums up exactly where I am with Son #2 right now:

Blogs: Cheaper Than Therapy

The other day I came across a post on another parenting blog, which seemed to be written for me. Blogger Rocks In My Dryer recalls the days when she had 3 boys under age 4:

“I’m not sure I was fully aware, back then, how incredibly taxing those days were. I operated much of the time in survival mode, buzzing between a pediatrician visit to a botched bedtime to a temper tantrum to an explosive diaper (or three). And I loved it – make no mistake. For all the exhaustion, there were many times that were so precious they did (and still do) take my breath away. But the intensity of the demands had me bouncing back and forth constantly between joy and discouragement, wonder and fear. I remember feeling guilty, sometimes, knowing there would never be a sweeter season in my life, so why was it that I sometimes just wanted everyone to go to sleep already?”

She continues: “I’m still very much in the trenches of motherhood, though I’ve mercifully passed into the days in which everyone is responsible for his or her own bodily fluids. Standing on this side of the preschool years, let me tell you, if you’re sitting there reading this with spit-up on your shirt, that you’re not crazy – what you’re doing is very hard. And it really does get easier.”

Thank God. Thank God this woman put into words what I’ve been feeling, without resorting to “Just wait till they’re teenagers” or “Enjoy this time because it goes so fast” or “Why don’t you go back to work if you don’t like being at home?” Because IT’S NOT THAT SIMPLE.

Miles as a toddler

Miles, age 2 1/2, on the floor of the aquarium

Every day, I am amazed at what a wonderful and intelligent human being I created in my own body. I marvel that, having been alive less than 3 years, my son already has more personality than most 30-year-olds I know. I revel in the joy he brings to his dad and me and everyone else he encounters. I cannot imagine what my life would be like without him. And yet…

Every day, I have to negotiate, bribe, endure, and sometimes threaten a very short, very strong-willed person. We clash over what to wear, what to eat, who descends the stairs first, whether to use the potty and when, who gets to flush, whether or not assistance is needed putting on shoes, getting into the car, and hundreds of other things. His needs always come first; mine are always last.

My son tests me like no one else. He brings me to my breaking point weekly, if not daily. And just when I am sure I cannot prepare yet another meal that will be refused and thrown away uneaten, when I am sure I cannot endure another struggle over letting the water out of the bathtub, when I am sure I will go insane if forced to play another game in which I pretend to be a Disney character, when I am sure that if my husband doesn’t walk in the door in the next 2 minutes I will run out of the house and never come back, I get up and do it all again the next day. And the next. And the next.

The aforementioned post reassured me that I’m not crazy and I’m not alone. So thank you, fellow bloggers and moms. This year, I vow to seek out more of you and drink in the wisdom of the blogosphere. It’s cheaper than therapy, that’s for sure!

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{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Kathleen@so much to say July 15, 2011 at 7:30 am

I always find it gratifying when people acknowledge that young childhood is hard and will get easier. I can’t stand being told that I’ll miss it, it’s so much harder later, I should appreciate it while I have it, yada yada yada. I did a whole bunch of posts on this topic a couple of months ago, and was so delighted when one older and wiser mother said she was never a baby/toddler mom–that for her, the teen years were SO much more enjoyable. It gave me the freedom to anticipate better days without thumbing my nose at people who insist I’m looking a gift horse in the mouth.

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Abby July 15, 2011 at 9:58 am

That’s so great that mom shared that with you. I only have 5 yrs of parenting experience, but I’ve already discovered I like the toddler years way better than the baby years. Even though the 2′s are a challenge, it’s more gratifying to me because the kid can talk and hug and give you feedback in a way infants can’t.

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Kim July 15, 2011 at 10:10 am

Blogging is a lifesaver for me in letting me know I am not alone. So often I think “am I the only one struggling here?” and then I read a blog and see that we’re all in the same boat together. And even better, the blogs help me to see my situation from different perspectives. And in the end, I feel like I can appreciate those difficult, challenging times with children, because blogging (reading and writing) helps me look back and laugh. It may take me a day or a week to look back and laugh, but that’s okay. I am so grateful for the therapy of blogging!!! However did our mothers survive?

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Angie Mizzell July 15, 2011 at 2:00 pm

This is almost exactly how the toddler years were with Dillon. Blake is only two, and I may eat my words, but he’s much easier. He can throw a tantrum, sure, but I don’t feel like everything’s a contest or negotiation.

Dillon is now 5 and today I told him to get off the floor as we were exiting the gym. He was trying to walk out on all fours. Love the picture of Miles. I’m sure I have one just like it. :)

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Lea July 17, 2011 at 6:10 pm

This is exactly what I needed to hear at this very moment. Thank you.

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Abby July 18, 2011 at 2:47 pm

I’m glad, Lea! Thanks for commenting.

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