This has been a really difficult month. Wow. And to be honest, I can't believe a month has already passed. In one way, I forget what life was like without Emily. In another way, it seems like just yesterday she was born. She has changed our family structure so much. Nolan really dotes on her which is cute. It's also hard. When she's peacefully sleeping somewhere he might walk over and put a blanket on her, which wakes her up. Or if she's sucking on a pacifier and then starts to doze off and it falls out of her mouth as she's dozing, Nolan was stuff it back into her mouth, waking her up or disrupting her dozing. He's only trying to be helpful.
Lately he's been hearing too much 'no' from us to which he has now begun responding by screaming 'NO' back at us. That only elevates the situation. So here's a typical scenario: Emily is screaming, I finally get her to calm down and she starts to doze, loses her pacifier. Nolan gets up to shove it back in, I say 'no'. He screams "NO" back at me waking Emily up and making me angry. I tell him we don't speak to each other that way and to go to his room until he's ready to talk nicely to me/us. He screams "NO" again. Fun times in our house. Fun times.
The sad part of this whole thing is, when Emily finally settles down and is sleeping, Nolan acts up and gets punished. And I just want to play with him when I FINALLY don't have Emily in my arms. She hasn't been a content baby so it's been hard to, for example, lay her on a mat and give Nolan my attention. OR when Emily is asleep I use that time to take care of me (go to bathroom, brush teeth, shower, eat a meal, etc) so in the end, Nolan is getting very little time with me. And when Dave gets home, Nolan's toughest hour, he's tired, cranky and there's so much transition between making dinner, getting ready for bed and inevitably feeding Emily that neither one of them gets a nice visit with each other.
As one friend put it, our family is in crisis mode. That's the perfect way to describe it. Dave and I have discussed behavior of Nolan's we're willing to temporarily accept and behavior that still requires a circumstance and what that circumstance is. We're united on that front.
This week we've seen a change in Emily. Monday we took her to the doctor because she seemed so terribly sick- loose stool, irritable, gassy, unable to stay asleep. The good and bad news is, there's nothing 'wrong' with her. She doesn't have a milk allergy, as the doctor puts it 'it's just her temperment'. But on Wednesday Dave and I BOTH saw a change in her. She seems more alert, tolerant of laying on the mat, she wants to be awake a little more and is better at holding the pacifier in her mouth by sucking. Her sleep has been a little deeper, making car rides and stops a tad easier. She's overall been a LITTLE bit easier and that makes a huge difference.
Also, I've concluded that it's hard for everyone right now to handle transitions. Me, Emily and Nolan. So the little class that Nolan has been taking to get him out of the house and with other kids is concluding and i'm not sure we're going to enroll him for next session. Maybe only one day a week. Coupled with the fact that his best buddy in the class has taught him all sorts of terrible things, spitting and potty talk among the worst, I won't be sad to have him home. The days we have no plans have been the best so far. So maybe we just need to be home, enjoying each other instead of trying to keep him busy. Who knows.
It's been a heck of a month. This is HARD people. Going from one to two children is HARD. I will accept ANY help anyone is willing to offer. Especially if that means I can play with my big boy while someone calms my little girl. I miss that guy.