Have you ever said to yourself, “it’s just a phase” to justify the horrendous moment in time called your life. I have found more and more with 3 boys ages 5, 2 and 1 that I keep saying “It’s just a phase. It’s just a phase. It’s just a phase,” loosely interpreted “please God, no, don’t let this be what life is now like and will be like forever. Please let it be temporary. We just have to get through this time and then we will enter the “Full House” part of life where everyday is filled with Joey’s hilarious situational comedy and Uncle Jesse’s outrageously good-looking hair and every teachable moment is a life lesson where kids sit down on the bed with a beautiful interlude of orchestra music in the background and they listen intently to your wisdom, they apologize for the shenanigans that Kimmie Gibbler got them involved in and their lives are forever changed.”
But the more life goes on, the more I feel like phases only pertain to “teething” and “potty-training,” instead of the phases I would prefer to be phases such as “not listening” and “disobedience” and “I know I ate a huge snack 1 hour before lunch and I just ate a gigantic lunch but I’m so hungry please give me another snack. My belly hurts and it only wants what you are having for lunch.”
We have had quite a “I hope it’s just a phase” weekend. Here are a couple of back stories for you to grasp the essence of this weekend. Drew has a dead tooth. We are going to the dentist Monday to confirm this but a couple of days ago I noticed his front tooth was discolored. I tried to scrape but when brought up to Lindsey, she replies “Yeah I saw that 3 days ago and thought it was chocolate so I already tried the scraping method. I think its dead.” He must have fallen awhile back and hit it where it has been slowly dying but this week it decided to change colors. Lindsey and I proceeded to have the epic debate: to pull or not to pull. She says pull, I say neigh. You may ask why and this is our reasoning: Would you rather have your 2 year old look like a pirate or a hillbilly? I say keep the tooth because pirates are cool in pre-school at Halloween but no one chooses to be a Hillbilly for Halloween except forgetful parents whose only solution to their procrastination of buying a good costume is a flannel shirt, ripped jeans, and a sharpie. You don’t want to have the kid who wears his costume in his mouth everyday, unless it’s cool like a rotten chopper. Not to mention if we did pull it, who knows what he would be sticking in there. You don’t want to get the phone call from pre-school, “Hi Mr. Allen, Drew was just found with another eraser in his tooth-hole. He was also sucking his thumb during school pictures but still smiling. He just slid his thumb right through that dead space and on into his mouth, smiling about his new trick.”
So yesterday morning at 5:30 am, I was awoken out of bed at what I heard Zachary to say “I threw up in my bed.” I rush out of my bed and run to his room to see him standing beside his bed in tears. I ask him if he is alright and he says “I didn’t throw up, I said my blankets fell off of my bed. Can you fix them?” Not the emergency I wanted to get up for at 5:30. Well he proceeds to stay up, followed by the other 2 hooligans who hear him playing with his door handle for an hour. So 6:30, everyone is awake and its party time. Well that day just dragged on and on and there was no end to the whininess and constant requests “I’m hungry, can I watch TV, where are my shoes, can I go outside, can I play at David’s house, but I’m hungry.” We had friends come over that night and brought their children who played with our 3 boys…hard. They were laughing and running and screaming and it was great. We were able to sit and talk with our friends why they entertained themselves. Well they went down later than usual and you would think that would mean they would sleep in the next day. Well that is what normal people do but we have vampire children that don’t require sleep and feed on joy of taking sleep from their parents. They were up at 6:15 this morning! All of them! Not all at one time but eventually they all wake each other up. Zachary is the first to wake up and he poops at 6 in the morning and then plays with the bathroom and his door handle for 15-20 minutes, this wakes Drew up who is instantly in a bad mood cause he is in his room and yells at the top of his lungs for someone in California to come let him out (its that loud), which then awakens Baby Nate who can’t talk but loves to scream and poop. Needless to say, we must get up. Well the next 5 hours are followed by more whining and requests and kids climbing on us and screaming and fighting and not listening and eating us out of house and home. And its still only 11:30. People who sleep in aren’t even awake yet. We call them single without children. We call them lucky. We want to call them to wake them up. Drew goes poop in the potty and then he calls for me not to wipe him but to get the poop off his finger. He already attempted to wipe himself without success. Well at least no success on toilet paper. So I wipe him getting poop on my own finger because the toilet paper rips and we spend the next 15 minutes scrubbing our hands. I didn’t see that on a Full House episode. It was just one more thing that went wrong today. So afterward Lindsey and I are laughing about the absurdity of today and this weekend and I tell her about Drew and I in the bathroom and how we formed the Poop Hand Gang. They call me Brown Finger and him Black Tooth.
It is nice to be able to laugh about these “phases” and recognize them for what they are: torture to live through but hilarious to retell and blog about. Because after all, these are the memories I would never trade in and little joys in life that should be seen as such I do look forward to sharing these stories with my adult children and their grand-children because I am not looking forward to 1 hour from now when those “parents-to-be” will be waking up from their nap and it starts over again. But it is only a phase, right?
Off to scrub my hands again,
The Joyful and Tired Dad