About a week ago, we had to put one of our dogs to sleep for aggression. It was heartbreaking, and possibly one of the most difficult decisions we've ever made as a family. However, after two years of increasingly aggressive behavior, including fence aggression, stranger aggression, and bites to several people (including our preschooler), we know it was the right decision.Oscar, our almost 3-year-old, has been full of questions. My husband and I decided that Oscar is too young to understand what happened with Nebo, so we stretched the truth a bit. We told him that Nebo was unhappy (True) and that he was going to live with a new family (False.) Oscar wanted to know if I was sad because I missed the brown dog (Yes). He wanted to know if our other dog, Valentine, missed Nebo (Yes). He wanted to know if we could go visit Nebo with his new family (No). Going on three weeks later, and he still asks after Nebo almost every day.
I realize this sounds a little crazy, but sometimes I think my preschooler prefers his grandparents to his mom.
When my mom left our house the other day, Oscar completely lost it. Gasping and sobbing and screaming for her. He refused to hug me or listen to my promises that he could see MeMe again tomorrow and even have his own special day with his MeMe all by himself. He wanted to go with her immediately. To stay home with Momma? Torture.
When MeMe came to pick him up the following afternoon, he could not contain his joy.
"She's here! MeMe is here to come get me!" He barely let her come in the door before he was pushing her back outside, eager, eager to go. And off they went on their grandmother-and-grandson-date, to have lunch and go play at the park.
Earlier this year, I began investigating preschools for my then two-and-a-half-year-old, Oscar. We visited several schools - co-op schools, non-co-op schools, optional co-op schools. I submitted applications to our top three picks and agonized over which one we'd send him to.
A co-op would be great because I want to be involved with his education; but co-op preschools can be time intensive and I really don't need a whole lot MORE right now. A non-co-op school would give Oscar a chance to spread his wings without Momma around, but they are more expensive and there are less opportunities for parental involvement. One of the schools had a five-day half-day program where as the other two were three-day programs.
Laundry. We parents do a lot of laundry. At home parents, working parents, work-at-home parents; every single one of us has laundry and that laundry demands to be washed. No matter how much laundry we do there is always, always more laundry.
A mom friend of mine who works full time out of the home often tells me that she envies my ability to do laundry during the week; she has to dedicate her whole weekends to laundry duty in order to get caught up.
I woke up a few weeks ago when 33-month-old Oscar's heel jammed into my bladder so hard I nearly wet myself and found 15-month-old Miles had fashioned himself into a 22 pound flesh scarf around my neck. My husband was snoring loudly and sleeping soundly. I was awake, uncomfortable, and awake. And all I could think was, "What the hell is going ON in here?"
My mantra when it comes to co-sleeping or sleep sharing or rooming out or WHATEVER parent/kid sleeping arrangements has always been, "Whatever gets the most people the most sleep." I still think that's pretty sound. Except when "the most people" getting "the most sleep" does not include me.
All I ever wanted was to sleep. That's how it all started. Because sometimes it's just easier to bring them into the bed, particularly when you are at the end of a long, long list of non-working sleep strategies.