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Hair All Over the Floor

October 5, 2012

It has been that kind of week. Tear-your-hair-out frustrating. A couple of times, I think I even burst into flames.

The boys are tired. Tired, tired, bone tired, where it’s leaking out their ears, tired. Last week’s tummy flu really sapped their energy and it was a big week, ending on a “Fun Run” note where Scoob ran four miles and Scrap ran one and a half. Those short little legs went kaput after the 12 lap. Raising money for their school, but leaving nothing to finish out their day.

Scooby’s emotions have been close to the surface all week. He’s not the kind of guy to hide things – ever. Scrappy on the other hand, he’s wiley. He’ll twist his story to suit the situation in the blink of an eye, but Scoob – he’s honest as the day is long. He simply can’t lie – he lives on the surface – there is nothing deep about him. Lying would require subterfuge, and subtlety isn’t in his nature. He tries to lie, every once in a while, as they all do, and it’s almost funny, those attempts. Eyes darting from side to side, his posture half-turned. Every cue, every tell…he has no secrets.

This week he felt frustrated, tired, and overwhelmed. All these on the surface resulted in lots of tears, lots of drama, and a wee bit of overreacting.

I can relate.

Scrappy, on the other hand, is more into extremes. Not a wee bit of drama – a ton of drama. Gallons of it. Drama oozing out his pores, dribbling onto the dining room floor over dinner, and overflowing the tub at bath time. His exhaustion was palpable. As is his wont, he is perfectly willing to share fatigue with any and all around him.

Thus, he went to bed early a lot. And passed out cold after lusty protest – usually on a bare mattress after expressing displeasure by flinging everything in his little nest into the corner.

Never one to hesitate biting off his own nose to spite his face, that one. You’ve got to admire that kind of vim and vigor. When you’re not ripping your hair out in the aforementioned chunks. As I was. A lot.

So it’s Friday, and, emotionally bald, I sit here writing to get the words out, the feelings out, the frustrations and fatigue out, and pick myself up again. Slap on the emotional wig and get going. Do it again.

Because that’s what we do, parents. We suck it up and keep going. They bleed us dry, and we keep going.

They kiss us and whisper good night and the tender arms around my neck erase all of it. They don’t know how hard it is, this job we do. They’ll never know until they sit where we sit, do as we do, love as we love.

Someday they’ll know, when their toddler’s roars rock the ceiling and, with nothing left, they leave the room to summon the last scrap of self-control that can exist on four hours sleep. At that moment, they’ll know. They might thank us then, they might not.

But they’ll know.

3 Comments leave one →
  1. October 5, 2012 8:26 pm

    Perfect. Absolutely pitch perfect. I remember it well. Oh, yes. The hair all over the floor. LOVE the picture of an emotional wig. Yeah, that about covers it. Notice that I said ‘about.’ Some of that rawness used to still hang out on me…

  2. October 5, 2012 10:17 pm

    Oh, yes! As the parent of a 2.5 year old (officially this Sunday), I can relate to most of this! He is flexing his spirited manipulative muscles, and I’m doing my darnedest NOT to react much.blast it all, though, because he KNOWS when he’s pushing my buttons, little devil gets that familiar mischievous twinkle in his eye, and he and I both know that I’m in for it!mom stifles laughter regularly. “Mom, shush!” She replies with something terrible like, he is so much like you and your brother at that age! Now you know what you put ME through!
    Ah, me! She’s right! I’ll take comfort in the hope that I’ll get to watch him go through it himself one day! 😉

  3. Kari permalink
    October 6, 2012 8:21 am

    My kids are just 3 and almost 5 and it just occurred to me this week that my parents probably got frustrated, angry, and annoyed with me when I was a kid under their tutelage. I was thinking that their patience and love were the only things there but of course that can’t be true. I’ve been pondering what this means for me as a parent with my own kids to love and teach. I don’t think my parents were fake with me, I just think that 1) they exercised self-control over their difficult emotions and frustrations and 2) the good outweighed the bad. Pondering that some more to think about how I can grow and be as a parent.

    Thanks for sharing

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