My BFF and I laughed earlier this week how kids have an awesome way of keeping us humble. Her daughter and Chloe had the funniest kid conversation ever.....the kind you can only laugh about with your closest friend.
I should have sensed the foreshadowing that was about to take place, because I had quite a week. So, in case you're having a bad week, I wanted to let you know you're in good company.
Here is a recap of my week's highlights:
- A certain toddler of mine had the most epic tantrum of my motherhood experience in, of all places, IKEA! If you've been to Ikea, you know it's an absolute maze. Imagine navigating that maze with a screaming toddler who will not stay in his stroller seat, so you're holding him while he hits and bites you between screams.....while carrying a large easel for your young artists. I proceeded to have the slowest cashier ever, and the people in front of me tried paying in Euros. So, yeah, that was awesome.
- To make it even better, somewhere between the park and Ikea, I lost one of his shoes (his only pair of nice shoes). So screaming, out of control toddler was missing a shoe. Which Every. Single. Person. In. Ikea. pointed out to me.
(We live far from Ikea but met friends at a park close to Ikea....so I stopped in "quickly"....ignoring my gut feeling that my kids were too tired.)
- One nameless child peed on his sister during a bath. I know what you're thinking, "Give us more advice on how to win the mother of the year award, Sarah. You seem to be nailing this parenting gig."
- The same nameless child completely missed the toilet when going not #1. Obviously he misses EVERYTIME going #1. But this time was infinitely grosser. (In full disclosure, my hero of a husband cleaned it all up).
- On two different days, lunch consisted of "eat anything you find because I am too worn out to think of food for the 4000th time this week." Which one of the days consisted entirely of dessert.
- A certain almost 2 year old is cutting his molars, so he hasn't slept through the night all week. Considering I didn't sleep through the night for the better part of 5 years, you would think this would not effect me. But, oh my gosh, once you've slept through the night, there's no going back. (Moms of infants, I love you.....and you will sleep again.....you shouldn't be reading this anyway, because almost nothing is harder than an infant not sleeping through the night. So feel free to yell at your computer that I have no right to complain about not sleeping for 6 whole days.)
There were a few other interesting moments sprinkled throughout the week, but those were the highlights.
Lest you feel terrible for me (you should because GOSH, it was a long week), I must disclose that yesterday afternoon, my incredible husband saved the day. Because his gesture was grand and sweet (and saved me from en epic meltdown. I had already melted down, I was just reaching threat levels), I must publicly thank him. He called me from work, letting me know he had scheduled a girls night with a sweet friend of mine....told me he would have the house cleaned when I returned.....then showed up after work with a fountain Diet Coke.
Soooooo my hilariously horrible week ended very well.
To conclude, disregard any advice I've ever given on parenting. Because I obviously have no idea what I am talking about. Just ask the 452 people who had the pleasure of shopping at Ikea on Wednesday.
My favorite show of all time, How I Met Your Mother, ended on Monday......with a precious series finale.
In the fan world, there was apparently a lot of people who were not happy with the ending. Honestly, when it comes to TV, I am not a huge details person. I sort of half-watch everything. This show I watch more intently, but I still can't remember much of the details. This whole last season has been the best yet. I have loved how they reminisced while still staying current.
Seriously, while there are lots of vulgar parts of the show (Brett never watched it with me), it was so well written. The show referenced so many sweet/funny/goofy memories from my childhood, so it was extra funny and interesting to me.
The series finale was not what I had anticipated, but it stayed true to the integrity of the show. I actually held it together for the first 50 minutes of the show, but the last 10 minutes just ended it for me, emotionally. It may or may not have involved a newborn baby :). I bawled my eyes out (which I expected to happen).
While the show itself is my most favorite ever, it was time for it to end. So the reason I was emotional was not because it was ending......but because it started in 2005. The year I got married. So, as cheesy and stupid as it sounds, the show has been with me for the best decade of my life.
In preparation for the series finale, I've been rewatching the episodes from the beginning....while I clean the house. I used to wish I had a TV in the kitchen, but my friend gave me the idea to use my iPad to watch Netflix while I clean.
The part that is so bittersweet is that things that happened in, say, 2007 on the show literally felt like they just happened a few months ago. (The show takes place in chronological order, coinciding with real life years).
Time goes so quickly. I know "they" always say that, but wow, rewatching HIMYM has brought that into a real-life perspective.
To add to the sentimental train, Caleb, Chloe, and I looked through our 2012 family scrapbook (you remember, the year of Chloe's bangs). Those photos seem like they just happened yesterday.
I've been enjoying my kids so much lately (sans a trip to Ikea today, where Levi thew the worst tantrum I've ever faced as a mom.....and you know Ikea is IMPOSSIBLE to get out of on a normal, non-child-screaming wildly day. I also lost his shoe at the park. Just one of them.). They are just incredibly precious and all at such great stages.
As my older two kids are entering the middle years, I AM LOVING the middle years. They have such deep, heartfelt conversations. They are growing bolder and developing character. I love who they're becoming.
Luke is in a stage where he talks really cute and dreams up wild things. He is just so hilariously precious.
Levi is the ultimate baby. We ALL baby him and dote on him constantly. He is just so easy going and fun.
There are still hard days, but I am finding them to be fewer and fewer. I am entering into a new season of life. My baby is almost 2.
Just last week, I went to the library, and there were loads of moms with strollers.....you know, their oldest kids are all under 3. It literally took my breath away. Those days feel like yesterday, but on that day, all four kids walked in the library on their own.
It is just weird.
I randomly had a dream a few weeks ago where I was sitting in a college orientation at Wesleyan University, but I could feel, in the dream, that I was not supposed to be there. I remembered I already had a college degree and a family to take care of. The dream was longer and involved quite a few people from my past.
It seemed random, but a few days later, while watching HIMYM reruns, they mentioned a few of the characters' college days......at Wesleyan, of all places.
Now that I've finished HIMYM and reminisced about the past (almost) decade, there is a part of me that thinks that dream was God showing me that this truly is a new season of my life. God speaks to me through dreams from time to time. The show ending is just a physical representation of what God is doing spiritually in my life.
The last few months have been leading up to this point. I've been on a journey with God and Him prompting me to start to ask what's next for me (now that my childbearing years are finished.....and I focus on raising my kids and pursuing callings that were impossible during the childbearing years).....and me starting to wonder what's in store.
As I've had a journey down memory lane lately, I am more encouraged for this new season of life. As much as time passes so very quickly, I love seeing my kids grow up and become the people God has called them to be. I love growing myself and becoming more of the woman I am called to be.
This has been a very interesting 2014.....as I've started wrestling with new dreams God is asking me to dream. Another kind of weird thing is I feel like God calling me to quit our homeschool co-op. We've done it for 3 years and have been happy with it, but I feel like we are being called away from it.
I am still trying to process through that. I am fine to lay it down, but I wonder why. The way I process things, I've come up with numerous reasons why it's a good decision (which helps me walk away to find reasons that justify quitting). But I have to wonder if God isn't replacing it with something else. I don't know.
I am in a season of unknowns. And, now that I am writing about this, the series finale to HIMYM talked a lot about seasons of life.....how they change and how we change in the midst of them....how those 5 friends moved on in different directions.
I'm in that season.....not moving on from friends.....but moving on from the childbearing years, where my focuses were morning sickness, nursing, wondering if I would sleep ever again, planning my next pregnancy, talking birth stories.
Those conversations have ceased and given way to new conversations.
It's a weird thing to close a chapter of life. I know good things are ahead, and I am excited to be moving on. But, there are so many precious memories of the last decade that I am simply so thankful I've had the privilege to walk them out.
It's so silly that a series finale could conjure up so much emotion, but it literally came at the exact time that God is doing this work in me. I love how He works.
For Caleb's birthday, we surprised our kids by taking them to Legoland.
We were in central FL for our niece's birthday, so we decided to have a fun family day.
It was AWESOME.
We stayed in a hotel in Orlando because we never stay in them. It is a huge novelty to our kids, so to celebrate our first born, we decided to stay. It was super fun. We stayed at an Embassy Suites (because, hello, free breakfast....which saves us $40). We swam at night, and they played a Disney movie on the side of the hotel. Our kids were in heaven.
The next day, we pretended like we were driving home......and then surprised the kids with Legoland!!
Caleb was the only one who believed us. Chloe said, "I will believe it when I see it!"
We had the MOST FUN day at Legoland. This season of our life is insane and busy, so to have time away together was so wonderful.