Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Behind the curtain

Last night, I hurt my back doing the most basic of all things...getting up from the couch.  Thankfully, the kids were in bed and I had already laid Raegan down in her crib for the night.  This happens every so often, thanks to not only the *delightful* aging process, but the degenerated discs in my back and years of issues with that.  I'm sure many people can relate.  Needless to say, when mommy is knocked down a few pegs in her abilities to 'do it all'...the usual flow of life is slightly interrupted. 

This morning, while attempting to get the kids ready for school, the pain I was feeling caused me to become upset with Gavin over something that, in the scheme of life, is a miniscule and forgettable event (as I type this, even, I can't really remember what it was--but I remember my reaction.  And I'm ashamed.).  Getting the girls in to daycare shifted slightly for me as well.  Squatting down to release Raegan from her carseat was an impossibility this morning, so my final morning squeeze n' smooch from my munchkin didn't happen.  Minor detail, but it was major enough for me to notice, and be upset by it.  Teaching proved to be a challenge as well today, as the non-stop slew of questions, visits to my desk for affirmation, and one-on-one assistance gave my swivel chair quite a swiveling work out today, compared to 'normal' day, when I'm able to just turn at the waist.

And then there was our evening.  I try to plan out in my head, a skeleton set of plans for our evening in my few moments of solitude as I drive from my school to Gavin's.  Tonight's plans included: me, not cooking dinner, and bathtime for the kids.  I knew Randy would be home for a pocket of time, so I had a good idea that my skeleton of a plan would soon come to fruition, and I could go to bed feeling somewhat accomplished, despite my inability to do much else. 

I should have known. 

The weather has been pretty cooperative, and very 'un-fall like', so the kids played with some neighbors from the minute I turned off the car in the garage.  Score.  Playing with Raegan was more 'up my alley' with my extremely limited mobility...although, she's quite roly-poly nowadays, so I was forced to try and contain her a little more than usual. 

Randy was puttering around online, looking at houses (typical), and I was trying to contain a little munchkin while keeping my movement to a minimum.  Dinner time approached, and I had previously announced my plans to not cook dinner.  Perhaps I should have been more explicit.  I assumed that the whole 'I can't move' thing would have been an indicator that I really didn't even feel like standing in the kitchen to heat up leftovers much less chop, dice, or sautee anything.  Silly me. 

In the end, I wound up heating up dinner and shuffling it over to my hungry brood.  Randy had gotten a call for work and was trying to coordinate the other guys going on the rig with him.  Hungry kids don't wait.  I winced in pain as I spooned pureed squash into a wiggly baby girl's mouth because the angle at which I needed to sit gave me a feeling simliar to that of someone strumming my spinal cord like a guitar string ( was that pleasant). 

Randy leaving meant my back-up, my 'kid bathtime giver' was leaving as well.  I knew that kneeling in front of a tub to suds up the kids was not going to happen.  Gavin is pretty independent when it comes to taking a shower, so I had that going for me.  Just a few reminders to actually use soap, wash behind his ears, and stop dancing in the shower, and he'd be set. 

The trouble was Brynn.  She is p.e.t.r.i.f.i.e.d. of the shower.  But, for as scared as she is, her ego is far more important to her.  She couldn't be 'the girl afraid of the shower' in this house--or in public, either.  (If you don't know...Brynn has a 'public'.  It's anyone and everyone she comes in contact with who has the slightest potential of complimenting her in some way, shape, or form.)  So, I had to problem solve in a way that would leave me with a clean kid and a mom whose back has not been further injured by a three year old who manipulated things to get her way. 

The solution?  Well, she wants to be just like her brother in just about every way.  If Gavin shares something about school, Brynn has to have a story that either is equal to or greater than the interest level of his story.  (It makes for a *fun* and very competitive car ride home.)  I used this to my advantage and had Gavin 'teach' Brynn what to do when we take a shower.  He described the steps for her, and after observing her still-uncertain-face, asked her if she'd like company so she wouldn't be scared.  In my eyes, they're still young enough to make this be ok, especially since it's just for the sole purpose of me having some relief in my mommy duties.

My allowance of 'shower sharing' this evening will pay off in the long run.  As it turns out, Brynn apparently has never been afraid of the shower, because when I was getting her jammies out, she proceeded to say, "Mommy, showers are fun...I want to always take showers".  When I pointed out that not 14 minutes prior, she was having a mini-meltdown over the prospect of running water hitting her, she laughed a ridiculous laugh and said, "ohhhh, mommy....that's crazy". 

The laughs and giggles, splashes and shouts coming from the shower gave me reason for pause...but I was in too much pain to do much about it besides lay on the bed and take pictures of Raegan.  But, before turning the water off, I had to capture a memory (of course).  Thankfully, my kids are well-trained by now.

Hopefully the rounds of heat and ice, coupled with a few stronger-than-usual medications with help reduce the inflammation in my back well enough for me to become a better-functioning momma.  The laundry, dishes, cooking, and pretty much anything involving Raegan will greatly appreciate it.

oblivious to mommy's pain

no tubby time tonight...just a quick sponge bath for my chunk-a-loo!

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