Sunday, March 28, 2010
Ch ch changes...turn and face the strain
We're about a week away from the 15 month mark and the changes are a plenty! For instance did anyone else live in complete oblivion that their one year old tots would have another nice long year before any of the terrible two behavior would set in? Well let me enlighten you to something nobody warned this mama about: shortly after junior starts walking he/she gets a taste of something very sweet called INDEPENDENCE and wants what he/she wants when he/she wants it and won't take mean Mommy's NO for an answer! Oy! Make that a double OY! Having one toddler is hard, having two is twice as hard.
Rasa and Adia have very different temperaments. Rasa is a cautious girl who relies on routine and touch to make her world feel cozy, safe and secure. Adia is "easy" and goes with the flow. It takes a lot to make her unhappy and she has a lot of energy. Both girls are filled with personality which is great and I of course love them both dearly and equally. Both temperaments have their advantages. Adia is flexible and easier with change. She's more welcoming of new people and new situations which is wonderful and when she's showing off for strangers it's hilarious. Cautious toddlers like Rasa have been shown to grow up being responsible and thoughtful teenagers who are less likely to use drugs or practice other unsafe behaviors. Just what every Mom hopes for! She's snuggly and super affectionate and I love having a cuddle bug.
Even with opposite temperaments both girls are extremely competitive. I believe that comes with the territory with twins. The girls race to be the first up the stairs, the first for me to pick up, the first to eat, drink, the first to whatever toy is the most popular. This would all be fine and dandy but I spend a lot of time comforting the second place runner up and while it's big behavior for such little girls I know they'll work it out as they grow.
When I had the girls I felt immediately that I knew exactly what to do. I never felt inexperienced, even though I was, or insecure about my decisions when it came to them. I knew instinctively how to care for them and meet both of their needs even at the same time. I carried a quiet confidence that made me feel like this was what I was put on earth to do!
With all that being said fast forward to now. Friday as I was pushing the girls to the park in one of our double strollers I was looking down at them as they were kicking their feet, laughing and singing in unison (which they do all the time, adorable I might add). Suddenly I realized something that I never had before; I have no idea what I'm doing. Is it because things changed suddenly and my once happy babies who took delight in crawling a few feet away from me only to turn around and crawl back into my arms are now running away and mad as hell when I have to catch up to them only to tell them NO they can't go there? Or is it because when they see a new thing that they positively MUST have and this mean lady behind them has to pry it out of their white fisted little hands? Or possibly because every time they think they are away and free this controlling woman snatches their freedom right up from under them and pulls them away kicking and screaming? Maybe.
I think when our kids are literally growing right before our eyes and we're present, I mean really present in each day, it's easy to continue to go with the flow until something smacks you in the face (hopefully not Jr.) and says, "hey wait lets reevaluate things here". The first year is so much about nurturing our babies so they can literally survive. We tend to them around the clock with milk, touch, security and love. All of the sudden you get the hang of it and bam! it's time to change gears. Toddlers have the same basic needs but their brains are so much more complex and they're really little people now with their own wants, opinions, likes and dislikes. It really is possible to respect and nurture those feelings even when they're the same ones that are making things difficult.
Well I'm in the process of switching gears! It's a beautiful thing to watch your kids grow and change right before your eyes and even the most challenging days always end the same way in our house; with snuggles, smiles, hugs, kisses and peace as we all dose off to sleep with the promise of the new day with new hope, new dreams and adventures.