I wrote most of this yesterday, so the title was accurate. If I were to pen it now, it'd say "thoughts on yesterday"... but. I'm keeping it as is. :)
She's been sicker than this before, I've been more exhausted and Peter's had more on his plate. But this day felt long, and hard. I'd really like a do-over, and I so hate feeling like that.
She fights for what she wants so hard these days. She fights to get into kitchen cupboards, to go outside, to reach for the sharp object, etc. She fights to pull the tails of the pets (luckily, they haven't fought back, yet!), and for me to stop whatever I'm doing and pick her up. Sometimes that's possible. Sometimes it's not. Now she's fighting against this damn cold to get good rest and to breathe easily. This makes her fuse extra short - she feels like crap, she's unhappy to not get her way, she can't breathe well and she likely has a headache. She coughs and coughs and whines and stumbles and falls more than usual. Sweet girl, but, man - exhaustion inducing for everyone.
And I? Instead of being the extra patient and extra kind mother as I should be when she isn't feeling well, as the day wears on I begin to unravel. By the end of the day I feel completely worn down and like this day, and her mood, had gotten the best of me. Defeated. Peter's had a rough couple of weeks, so bless his heart, but he wasn't able to step up tonight. Poor guy had to come immediately home from the office and log right back on his laptop and work until bedtime. No rest for him these days - I wish I could take some of it off his plate.
So here we are, a run down family, none of us feeling or acting like our best. I'm ashamed at raising my voice at a 13 month baby, and ashamed to admit it probably won't be the last time. Bedtime was a battle tonight, and as I was about to go downstairs for who knows what round of the battle, Peter offered to do it for me. I would have loved to take him up on his offer, but knew that if I didn't end this day on a positive, warm-fuzzy-feeling note, I'd go to bed feeling even worse. So I went downstairs and rocked my girl, and watched her finally stop struggling against her cough and drift to sleep in my arms. And I realized I know her. I know almost everything about her. She rubs her hand against my arm as she falls asleep, the other hand tucked behind my back scratching it. She fits in the crook of arm still. She trusts me and loves me. Shame on me for letting her down with my lack of patience when she needed me today. I'm her mother, I owe her better than our day today. I kissed her head and told her I loved her, and promised her that tomorrow would be better.
And, today - is better. Still a little rough around the edges, like we're hungover from yesterday's cranky-bender. She woke up early and took a very short first nap. But as I dutifully made muffins this morning with the bananas that needed to be used today, and she whined to be picked up, I remembered my promise. I didn't pick her up, but brought the bowls and batter to the floor and sat with her as I walked her through what I was doing.
"See El, you put the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix it up. It'll be lumpy, but don't overmix". She was fascinated, and peered curiously into the bowls as I stirred. She reached her hand in (a little too quickly!) so I asked her to sit on her bottom, please. She sat obediently, as she licked her fingers, and I promised her that when she's a little older, she can help me stir.
And then I realized that my years of waiting for this very moment were coming to fruition. I am baking, with my daughter.
And when the muffins were done, we ate them together.
The rest of the day might be difficult, or it maybe not, but I will try my hardest to uphold my promise to her last night that today will be better. And it will be. :)