Saturday, June 30, 2012
After a failed attempt at a nap and many errands yesterday, Chris and I took Lakin to a Mexican fiesta some friends were throwing. The couple hosting do not have children, Lakin was only one of two kids present and the house was immaculate and free of kid clutter.
Upon arrival, Lakin's enthusiasm for new places and seeing all her grown up friends got the best of her and she was running around like we'd kept her caged up for the day. The exhaustion always hypes her up rather than mellows her out and so Chris and I were left chasing a wild toddler around someone else's house and playing damage control.
She wanted to touch all the pretty, non-child proof items on the book shelf and coffee table, she wanted to spin circles in the kitchen where hungry guests were stumbling over her to get to the guacamole, she thought it hilarious to get bottles of water and soda out of the cooler and line them up on the tile floor. The stairs enticed her in a way she simply couldn't refuse and on multiple occasions she had to be carried down them to keep her on the main level with the adults.
I spoke sternly with her in the corner about listening and respecting other peoples' homes and things. The poor girl could barely keep eye contact as she strained to see what was happening in the buffet line. I was not making any headway with my lecture and I knew this night might not end well. She was too excited and too exhausted to make good choices for herself.
We weren't there 30 minutes before I felt she was a bit too rowdy and I needed to take her home. I had told her that if she couldn't listen we would leave and now it was time to make good on that promise. Drama and tears ensued as she began to understand what was happening. I scooped her up, politely said my goodbyes, and got her buckled into the carseat as fast as possible to reduce the scene I knew she was capable of causing. Chris stayed and caught a ride with some gracious friends and I was glad he was able to relax and enjoy the evening.
The car ride home, Lakin whined that she wanted tacos. She wondered where we going. Where were all her friends? I thought, somewhat smugly, that I too would have loved to eat one of those pork tacos, just coming out of the kitchen as we had our final meltdown and exit of the night. I started to feel sorry for myself that I was missing all the fun and all because my kid couldn't behave herself. This parenting gig is sometimes tough, you know?
Lakin was asleep within 5 minutes and we pulled into the garage and I unloaded the car and took my sleeping girl into her room. She woke the second I put her in her crib and began crying for me. In my frustration I picked her up and sat down with her in our rocker and laid her against my chest. In her sweet, quiet, sleepy voice she asked for a song. "Prepare me. Sing it momma." We sat and rocked our way through a couple of quiet songs together. She whispered, "Night night momma." indicating to me she was finally ready to let her body rest. I laid her in her crib and she looked at me with eyes half open and told me she loved me and to sleep tight. My eyes felt heavy with tears as I felt so thankful to have such a sweet moment with my daughter.
My life is forever changed. Things will not be getting easier any time soon with the addition of a baby this Fall. But being a parent is simply a gift. It's so hard at times and there are many moments where I wish they put out a manual to help you know just what to do in any given situation. But I'd miss a million taco nights if it meant getting to steal moments like that with my kids. Even when she drives me nuts, this girl's totally stolen my heart.