I watched a video today about parenting taboos. The couple discussed a few things that parents aren't supposed to admit to feeling: lonely, not falling in love immediately with your child, not being overwhelmed with happiness all the time. This made me think about the other secret (or not so secret) feelings parents struggle with. I know it's cliche, but parenting is tough! I'm constantly worried I'm not spending enough time with my 3 year old little girl, I'm not disciplining her enough, disciplining her too much or for the wrong things. It becomes very easy to get lost in the 'what ifs' and worries, and I forget to stop and enjoy her just as she is now. I am extremely sentimental, and the consuming knowledge that each day speeding by is one less I'll have with her, quickly sucks up the joy from the present moment.
Because of this (now not so secret) feeling, I decided to document some of these moments to reflect and learn from. Maybe someone can glean some wisdom and/or laughter from my family's moments.
Lesson #1 - Waking up a toddler.
The process of waking up my daughter, Eva Grace, is an unpredictable one. I always hold my breath walking into her room and pray she wakes up in a cooperative, non-whiny mood. It never fails that on the days when I am most rushed to get out the door, she awakes as another child; a child that refuses to do anything I ask or whines and slow pokes around until she completes the morning routine. I have no one to blame but myself, however, due to the fact that I wait until the last minute to get her up. *My husband has taken on the task of waking up our Sleeping Beauty. This has saved many mornings and I am extremely grateful that he wakes up hours early before his day starts to help us both out! However, there are still some mornings (rare as they are) that it's my responsibility again to get her up and moving. This morning I was rushed to get out the door for church (surprise!) and I decided to try the tickle tactic.
Once she was kind of awake, I dropped the urge to begin the checklist of what needed to be done (potty, change clothes, brush teeth, brush hair, etc.) and I just spend a few extra seconds tickling her to wake her. This turned into a familiar game at our house - cinnamon danish!
When I was a kid, I was surrounded by four much older siblings. They, of course, loved picking on the toddler. My oldest sister would always tickle me until I could plainly say "cinnamon danish!" It sounds simple enough, but you try spitting this out clearly as a three year old while someone (or four someones) hold you down and tickle you breathless.Back to this morning, the cinnamon danish game worked like a charm. Eva Grace's laughter, squeals, and multiple attempts at saying the magic word 'cinnamon danish', took my mind off of time constraints and checklists and allowed the two of us to just enjoy the moment we had been given. That was completely worth being late by a few minutes!