Wednesday, December 16, 2009

The Day I (Finally) Sat on my Toddler

Those of you who know me (and know my toddler) knew this day wasn't long in coming. To be honest, I'm surprised we've made it this far. But today it finally happened: I sat on my child. But at least let me explain.

Will and I have a system. It's a good system, especially for one who craves order and routines as much as I do. I wake up before Will, shower, dress, do my hair and make my bed. Then, when Will wakes up around 7 and after he plays in his crib for half an hour with the toys and books I bring in to him, we head downstairs for breakfast. We usually eat a breakfast of oatmeal, toast and fruit and then Will gets to have a "show" (usually Curious George on PBS at 8:00) while I finish cleaning up and getting ready to head out the door. I then dress him while he is watching his show, which is key because getting this child dressed is no simple task. But while he is in the TV-zombie zone, changing his diaper and getting him dressed is no big deal (as long as I don't get in the way of the television). Then we take off for a morning activity and come home around 11:30 for lunch and a nap. It's not a perfect process, but it works for us.

Well, today was a little different b/c it was a Monday and on Mondays I wake up early, start the laundry, clean the bathrooms, mop, vacuum, dust, etc., etc. And most Monday mornings I just let Will run around in his jammies and do basically whatever he wants so that I can get the house cleaned for the week. On this particular Monday, though, I was supposed to help an elderly lady clean and organize her newly moved-into apartment at 10:30. My neighbor had kindly agreed to watch Will while I did this task. So at around 10:00, I realized it was time to get the kid ready to go. And this is where it all went wrong. I should have listened to my gut and turned on the television to get the task quickly and efficiently accomplished. But no, I bravely dared the task sans television. I got him undressed when he slipped out of my grasp. He ran around his room, behind the rocking chair, then under the crib, then shut himself up in the closet all within 3 seconds. I chased him, but to no avail. Finally, I caught him and lay him down to attempt to diaper him. But he literally is stronger than me. He squirmed away and off he went again. Discouraged and now running late, I grabbed him again. I tried to hold his feet down, while once again attempting to diaper him. But again I failed. Off he went. This process went on for another few minutes until I was REALLY running late. Finally, at my wit's end, the next time I caught him, I sat on him. What would you do? He squirmed and wiggled and screamed but there was no way he was getting away again. Not with the weight of me on top of him. So off I went to my neighbor's, with a fully clothed child. And then off I went to help a lady in need, a lady who WASN'T EVEN THERE. And then off I went to rescue my neighbor from my child, a child who had thrown up all over my neighbor's home, a child who had taken half an hour and one sitting incident to get dressed. And all for what? For naught. So the day I finally sat on my child, it was all in vain. I guess I learned my lesson: trust your gut and turn on that PBS (or at least wait for the perfect occasion when it would be appropriate and justified to sit upon one's child).

Please tell me that you've succumbed once or twice and sat upon your child. Please tell me that mine is NOT the worst child to get dressed in the mornings. Basically, please tell me that I am not failing as a mother since my logical and seemingly only option was to, in fact, sit upon my child.


jess said...

First of all, I CAN NOT BELIEVE THAT YOU WAKE UP BEFORE YOUR CHILD!!! That is way more astounding to me than you sitting on him. (Tells you what a fabulous mother I am?)AND on Mondays you get up early to clean the whole house? WHAAAAT???!! Who are you, and where do you get your superhero strength? Seriously. I NEVER get up before my boys. Unless the house is on fire, and even then, it's a pretty tough call. Sure, I don't always get a shower in before 10pm, never blow dry my hair, and feel very accomplished if I am dressed and have makeup on BEFORE Clint gets home, but whatever. Just this week I started a major cleaning schedule to stay on top of things more, but that would never happen at the ungodly hours before the boys are up. Naptime is golden as is bedtime.
Lastly, boy do I feel you on the getting dressed war. Owey is impossible, even in TVcoma. Though I've never sat directly on top of him (that I can remember) I OFTEN sit my legs on top of his while I am changing his diaper because otherwise he kicks me in the face. And really, who wants to clean up someone else's poop AND get kicked in the face? So, you do what you have to do and pray that potty training comes quick and easy. Henry unfortunately has learned all his moves from his big bro and though I would've thought it impossible, is even squirmier than O ever was. That's why he's Henry Houdini. Pretty sure it's not going to get easier. My latest tactic? When I can tell that it's not a good time and we are going to have major problems, I offer a cookie if Owen lies down to get changed or dressed and is good the whole time. This isn't every time by far, but if we're in a hurry and I know it's going to be a battle. No, apparently I'm not above bribery. Does that make you feel better?!?!

Danalin said...

What a day, sister! Too bad you can't use the "princess" trick on little Will (read my most recent blog post). I haven't had to sit on either of my kiddos yet (but you'd better believe I would if the situation called for it). However, I have felt like I was muscling my children when I've put my whole arm/elbow/side body into their arching, screaming bodies to get them in their car seats....and I don't feel bad about it. Neither should you. And I think it's awesome...errr...awful that you had to go through all of that trauma and then the lady wasn't even there. It makes the story that much better. :) I hope today went more smoothly for you!

Ryan and Angela said...

I just sat on Kathleen last week to put chapstick on her (her lips were almost bleeding). So if I have to do it to my 7-year-old, then I guess I am a terrible mom.

whitney said...

ditto to what jess said... i NEVER get up before my boys, except if i go on a run and then i'm still not showered 'til hours later. nor do they have a daily morning activity. wow, jessy... you are amazing!

and yes, i have sat on my children before. i think you're doing just fine. :)

Jane said...

While I have no experience with dressing my children (because I don't have any), I do think this story sounds like it could have been written by the one and only Bridget Jones. Well done.

And as long as little Willy is dressed, that's all that matters. The "how" is a merer detail and is not important.

Vickie Blanchard said...

Six months ago I might have read this and thought that sitting on a child is a horrible thing to do. Now that I am a parent, it is so much easier for me to empathize and understand the circumstances that got you to that point. Congratulations on surviving the day! (You and Will!)