It's Motherhood Monday. Today Jessica of The Domestic Pirate joins us with the reality of raising kids of all ages. It's not always easy to parent kids in multiple stages but it's part of motherhood and Jessica is in the thick of it.
Jessica is The Domestic Pirate, Renn Faire Privateer Gone Mom. She started blogging in 2011 as an outlet for Post Partum Depression, but came back into her spazzy, wenchy Pirate self upon the epiphany that she didn't need to mold herself after anyone else. She posts about whatever tickles her fancy though empowerment and acceptance are where she feels she really hits her stride. She is wife to the Captain, mom to the 4 Cabin Kids, and is convinced that the dough is always better than the cookie. Aside from her blog, you can find her on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.
Now that we have a newborn again, my focus has been on making the house baby friendly. Mostly, that means getting rid of/avoiding things that aren't safe for baby or could potentially be too loud or disruptive.
But there's an inherent problem with that...
I have more than just a baby.
I have a 2 year old boy that copies everything his 4 year old brother does.
I have a 4 year old boy that likes making loud, wet shooting noises and crashing cars into everything.
I have a 7 year old girl that's getting into beads and likes toys with tiny pieces.
The 2 year old doesn't understand how to be quiet.
The 4 year old understands, but doesn't have to capacity to remain quiet.
The 7 year old just won't be quiet.
2 year old needs attention and help with everything.
4 year old is mostly self-entertaining, but still needs help with a few things.
7 year old can take care of herself, but insists on faking that she can't.
I have to admit, my favorite stage is the baby stage. Once they hit 2 and want to communicate but don't have the capacity yet, I start getting frustrated. Once they hit 4 and start forming their own opinions and voicing them, I start getting annoyed. Once they hit 7, apparently, they become know-it-alls and I can't freaking stand them. And I'm dealing with it all at once. Of course I love them all, and most of the time they really aren't bad, but we all know there are days when you just wish a circus would come through and trade you a monkey for them.
So, how do we proceed?
I need to relearn parenting. I've been so focused on remembering the baby stuff, that I'm forgetting how important these other ages are.
I need to remember that watching a 2 year old get excited about learning something new is amazing.
I need to remember that helping a 4 year old learn how to get dressed on his own is building a foundation of self-confidence he'll need later in life.
I need to remember how hard it was to be 7, watching your younger siblings consistently get more attention than you, and embrace the growing girl child as she is, for her self-esteem depends on it.
It's time for me to stop running my house to accommodate the needs of an infant and start functioning as a parent of multiple ages.
But I will never stop insisting that they let me snuggle them like the babies they will always be in my heart.