Life with a toddler – How’s your day going?
I’ve had great intentions for this week. Eating better, exercising more, not being driven completely demented by a whingey little toddler. It all sounds great in theory, but it’s not working out too well so far. My parents/babysitters took off to the country overnight putting paid to plans of going to my weekly yoga class this morning. Fine. I’m supposed to start doing some running in the mornings this week, so I thought I’d do that before Daddy left for work this morning instead. Then I’d arranged a nice playdate for the little monster, he’d nap, we’d cook a nice dinner, it’d be a lovely day. Little monster had other plans (he always does!).
Last night after the usual hour and a half or so of wrestling the little monster into pjs, brushing teeth, bedtime milk, FOUR bedtime stories, lights out, cuddles, tossing, turning, sitting up, lying back down, starting awake as soon as I dared move… he was out cold. Considering that he’s finally started sleeping some longer stretches at night, he still acts overtired all the time and fights sleep until he’s literally drowning in yawns. Then suddenly (miraculously) he crashes for hopefully more than an hour and we can enjoy a bit of peace and quiet. It was bitterly cold and miserable last night, so we curled up on the couch with tea and chocolate and enjoyed watching The Biggest Loser contestants sweat it out on the treadmill. The weeping and wailing and overly dramatic exits because they failed to lose a massive amount of weight one week are even more entertaining. Especially as someone other than me has to deal with their emotional outbursts.
Then we shuffled off to bed. It was chilly. The wind was howling outside as it’s done all week. The neighbour’s security light was flicking on/off/on/off which drives me mad. The other neighbour’s dog was barking loudly every few minutes which drives me mad. My husband was muttering in his sleep and blowing deep breaths into my face any time I dared to turn and face him, which drives me mad. Typical night as I try to get to sleep knowing the toddler alarm will go off at any moment.
“Maaaaaammmmmyyyyyy!!!!!!”. All of a sudden it’s 4am as I stagger out of bed. 4am. That’s a great stretch of sleep for himself! I’m pretty happy as I go in to sort him out and put him back to sleep. That is until it becomes evident that he’s having a massive hissy fit and is not planning on going back to sleep any time soon. “Light!”, “Light!”, “Time to giddy-up (get up)”. “No want sleep.” “Play with Daddy”. “Sing songs”. All these phrases and more shouted, wailed, and sobbed at me for the next two hours and fifteen minutes. All whilst yawning intensely, almost asleep many times. We tried a drink of water. We tried a cuddle with Daddy. I sat holding him and singing lullabies until I was hoarse. He refused to be out of my arms. The tantrums lulled, then raged on again even more intensely.
Finally, at 6.15am, he ran out of steam. Body relaxed, head lolled back, snuffling little snores. I carefully placed him back in bed just as my vision was starting to swim from my circulation being cut off. Lay beside him in the cramped single bed long enough to verify he was in a deep sleep, then slunk back to my own bed. You can imagine how far I ran in the early hours of the morning. Yes, that’s right, I was still in bed. At 9am my husband dragged himself off to work looking like the dead. I pulled on some clothes and then had to rouse the little monster who was having a grand old snooze two hours after his normal wake-up time. We were just about finished breakfast when our playdate showed up and the little monster was full of beans for the next couple of hours.
Now what to do about his nap? His usual naptime approached quickly. I debated taking him out for a walk – hoping to tire him out enough that he’d have a snooze in the car later without destroying any chances of him going to bed before midnight tonight. “Go for a walk?”, I said hopefully. “Nap”, he said dismissively. Really? After sleeping so late? “Nap!”. He was insistent on going through the whole naptime rigmarole – which he often does despite having no intention of actually sleeping. 45 minutes later he was back in pjs and dozing in my arms. That’s… unexpected.
So instead of being out for some freezing running or sweaty Hot Yoga this morning, I am sitting in bed with a book, a cup of tea, and a bar of chocolate. Listening to snores from the lump beside me. That’s typical life with a toddler. I’m sure I’ll get around to doing all that good stuff tomorrow. Just don’t tell my toddler I have any plans. Please. How’s your day going?