Stops and Starts

March 3, 2010 at 9:27 pm | Posted in Lollipop | 18 Comments

Yesterday, Lollipop and I had one of those days. As they say.

She didn’t want to go to school; I told her she had to. She didn’t want her jacket; I told her she needed it. She decided on no hat, then changed her mind (as we were pulling out of the driveway); I told her we weren’t going back. Oh, the tears.

It was more of the same when I picked her up. She didn’t want to nap; I told her to lie down and be quiet. She got into her Matchbox cars; I took them away. She jumped on her bed; I yelled.

Nothing new here. Just a toddler pushing the envelope, her boundaries. And her mother being impatient.

Love Is a Battlefield
Finally: quiet. I had won. But I felt so defeated. Why did we have to battle it out in the first place? Why did I even need to “win”?

There was no time to ruminate. Lollipop had fallen asleep at the time she usually gets up. Of course. If there was even a chance of her being tired at bedtime, I had to wake her. Talk about shallow victories.

I opened her door and peeked in. I saw the disaster she had made. Piles of books. Piles of pajamas. Piles of stuffed puppies wearing pajamas. Anything to avoid sleeping. But no Lollipop. She’s gotten into my closet, I thought, or into my jewelry, the laundry, the linens. I felt myself getting angry all over again.

Then I saw her. A tiny puff of pink tulle tucked into the very corner of her bed. So small. So needy. So mine.

The Sound of Silence
I sat down next to her and rubbed her back, her cheek. She stirred and reached for me, her taffeta Sleeping Beauty dress whispering our apologies to each other. I pulled her close, and we slid to the floor. She laid her head on my chest, carefully adjusted her knees around my pregnant belly. I closed my eyes and let her wispy, pixie hair tickle my nose.

And we sat. Entwined. Together. Quiet. I don’t know how long. Long enough.

Long enough to let the silence say all we needed to say. Long enough for her to express emotions she can’t yet understand. Long enough for me to let go of emotions I know better than to give in to. Long enough.

Daydream Believers
Then we got up, got Giggles, got the dinner ingredients from the pantry. We got our day going again.

But for that one moment, we stopped. Arguing, battling, pushing. We stopped working against each other.

And we started. We started needing, feeling, fixing. We started over.



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  1. That just made me cry!!! You do this to me so often, you’d think I’d be better prepared! All You Need is Love.

  2. I know those days and am having plenty of them myself lately.

    Thanks for a post that reminds me to focus on the moments within each day.

  3. So true, so sweet, so well put.

  4. Beautiful. So been there…

  5. You probably don’t need me to tell you this, but I know exactly how you feel. And when it is all done and over with, I think the same thing, “why do we need to go through this?”

    Because they need to find themselves, and we need to let them.

    I loved that description of the “tiny puff of pink tulle”. I could picture it perfectly, although oddly enough, with two girls, I’ve yet to have a tutu in my house.

  6. Beautiful. I love it!
    Thank you! My daughter thanks you as well, when she will do something to royaly piss me off and I’ll look into her beautiful brown eyes, remember your post, and not spank her with a wet noodle!

  7. Really beautiful. You helped me to stop and take a deep breath after a chaotic morning. Thanks for reminding me that I love being a mom.

  8. Ohhh… 🙂 Sweet. Sweet moments in the midst of chaos are what make us able to tolerate it all.

  9. Thanks for sharing that beautiful moment – I have tears in my eyes now!

  10. Well said. This brought tears to my eyes. Those moments are so pure. When I get worn down with the little one, I sneak a snuggle right before her nap and she puts her tiny, chubby palm on my neck and it all melts away. But the feelings of frustration are so valid. Moms who don’t react when their kids throw rice cereal on their face or disobey creep me out. It’s healthy and makes those peaceful moments that much more special and cherished!

  11. You’re making me cry!
    So sweet. Thank goodness for those moments.

  12. I think that’s one of the gifts our kids give us–that quick forgiveness that allows us to start over. God knows, I have a lot of days that need re-do’s.

  13. It’s so wonderful how snuggles and quiet seem to fix so much. I remember those moments with Fynn when my belly was huge with Paige, such sweet moments.

  14. I have those days all the time. Sometimes I forget to have that moment of silence. I’ll try not to forget again. Thanks.

  15. this grabbed me and shook me..I needed ths. I think at times we forget to choose our battles and lose ourselves in rules and in the end we forget the hugs, the laughter the simple things are those that are important.

  16. So beautifully written. And feelings I can relate to so well. I love how you chose the song titles: a soundtrack ran in my mind throughout. Great post!

  17. That was beautiful. And how well do I know these feelings. Toddlers. Oof.

  18. That was wonderfully written. Thank you for sharing.

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