When Maya was little I used to have so much fun getting her dressed in the morning. I loved picking out the perfect little outfit. My favorite was always a cute pair of jeans (I love baby jeans!) and one of her many adorable shirts. I loved shopping for new clothes for her, finding more adorable little pieces to add to her wardrobe. As I shopped for those new pieces and as I put together cute little outfits for her, I would daydream about how much fun it would be to shop for outfits when she was a bit bigger. I’d look at the clothes in the kid section and imagine what she might wear.
I knew early on that she was going to be opinionated about clothing. She was probably 2 the first time she voiced her opinion at the store as I was picking something out. I had fun with it once she started to show her inner fashionista. I’d let her choose what color shirt we would buy, or which pants. It was fun. Eventually it led to her wanting to pick out her outfits too. And, I was okay with that, it was fun to see what she would pair together. If the outfit was beginning to look a little too crazy I would steer her carefully towards something a little less fashion forward. For a while we went on, peacefully, this way. Me buying new things, with her input of course, and her pretty much picking what she wore each day.
As time went on her opinions grew stronger and I lost all hope of getting to pick out those cute big kid outfits I had dreamed about. I was okay with that. I missed those cute little jeans that I used to love to dress her in, but the dresses she just HAD to wear were pretty darn cute too.
I never would have imagined this happening, but somewhere along the line Maya developed this weird disdain for wearing clothing. She still loves clothing, especially frilly dresses and skirts, but she hates wearing clothing for any length of time and Lord help us if she has to wear pants (which is a good portion of the time since she has to wear them for school). If we are home she is in nothing but her underwear. There is always a pile of clothing at my front door because the second to steps over the threshold she begins stripping down. This has been going on for 2 years now. For a little while, last winter, I got her back into the swing of wearing clothing all the time again, but she has reverted back to her old ways again.
Lately, it has become a big problem, this disdain for clothing. Every time she has to get dressed a battle of epic proportions ensues. I mean, serious epic battles complete with hysterics, yelling screaming (on both our parts) and lots of crying. And, since she insists on stripping down to her underwear every time we come home we can end up having these battles several times a day.
The other day we hit a breaking point. We were trying to get ready for a quick trip over to the park to play for a little bit before dinner. I was working on getting Anna ready so Lorne was helping Maya. I heard the freak out begin when he told her she had to pick out pants and a long sleeve shirt (her two least favorite items). It escalated when he tried to help her get dressed, she only wanted mommy to help so down the stairs she came. At this point Anna was all ready to go complete with coat, hat and mitts. I helped Maya get her clothing on and she had a complete meltdown over the way her pants felt. She was in complete hysterics, screaming right in my face. It ended with her being sent to her room and our trip to the park being canceled.
It was one of her worst meltdowns over clothing, which is saying a lot given how crazy her daily freak outs over clothing can be. Lorne and I talked about it and decided enough was enough, and we started the clothing challenge. Now, she has to wear clothing all day, every day, even when we are home. The hope is that by having to wear clothing every day she will again get used to the way clothing feels on her body and her freak outs will begin to stop. Fingers crossed.
I don’t even care anymore that all she wants to wear are sundresses, even in the middle of winter. I don’t care anymore about the cute jeans and adorable shirts that she absolutely won’t wear. At this point I just want my mornings to not involve any more epic battles over clothing. I just want her to pick out something she will wear and wear it, all day, with no fussing.
So, one week into the clothing challenge and things are…going ok. She will wear her clothes all day, although if she has been wearing pants out she changes into a dress the second we walk in the door. But, every morning is still a huge battle to get her dressed, especially if she has to wear pants. Sometimes I wish I lived somewhere where she could get away with wearing sundresses every single day because then maybe she wouldn’t fight with me every morning.
We’ve been in Seattle for 4 full days now. The vacation that was our road trip here is over. Lorne is back at work and the girls and I are trying to get into a routine. Anna was completely out if her routine after last week’s travels and suffering from some crabbiness as a result so I’m working hard to get her back on schedule this week.
Besides trying to get back on track schedule-wise we are also trying to navigate this new area. I’m feeling a bit lost the last couple of days, both figuratively and literally. Everyone being off schedule and not knowing my way around is causing me a bit of stress. I have set a goal for myself this week of getting Anna back on schedule and exploring around a bit.
Anna is napping for the second day in a row. So far so good on that front. Plus, yesterday I managed to find my way to Target, an absolute must for me! And today we ventured out for a little play date with some friends. It may not seem like much but it feels good to have gotten out, even of only for a little bit. thank goodness for navigation systems or I probably wouldn’t have done t hat much!
I’m sure in a month or so I’ll be able to get around so much easier. I won’t feel like I have no idea where I am or where I’m going. But for now it is a bit nerve wracking to venture out. I just need to take a deep breath, grab a shaken iced tea lemonade from Starbucks and start exploring
When I was breastfeeding my first daughter I had all the time in the world to give her when it was time to nurse. If she wanted to spend 20 or 30 minutes nursing it was fine because there was nothing else more important or that needed my attention more. We spent a lot of peaceful, uninterrupted time together while she nursed.
Before my second daughter was born I fretted over how breastfeeding would go given that I would now have a 4 year old who also needed my attention. Sitting down to quietly and calmly breastfeed seemed impossible to me when there was a rambunctious little girl running around who would need help going potty or help getting a snack or would want to play, etc. etc.
When Anna was born I was determined for our breastfeeding relationship to be as calm, peaceful and enjoyable as it was with Maya. It was important to me because I felt she deserved it even though she was our second and life was more chaotic now. I set my mind to it and did everything I could to make it so. A few things I did to make this possible were:
- I set the precedent from the beginning that I would sit quietly and nurse her whenever possible.
- I prepared Maya before I sat down to nurse Anna. I would ask her if she had to go potty or needed a snack because I was about to feed her sister and wouldn’t be able to help her for a little bit.
- Whenever possible I nurse Anna in the quiet of her bedroom before naps and bedtime. Of course, that only works when my husband is home to watch Maya.
- I try hard not to be distracted while nursing. I focus as much attention on Anna as I can just as I did with Maya when I had all the time in the world.
- I talked to Maya before Anna was even born about breastfeeding and what it would entail.
- I make sure Maya has something fun to do while I’m nursing Anna either something to play, or a show to watch.
12 months in and I’m happy to say I feel as though I’ve been able to give Anna pretty close to the same attention and quiet during our nursing sessions as I did when I nursed my first child. It wasn’t easy and it took dedication but I made it work.
It is so easy to get distracted in the day to day chaos of raising children. I enjoy the peace and quiet of sitting down to cuddle my baby while she nurses and I’m glad I as able to make it happen even with so many other distractions around.
This year I get to do something on Mother’s Day that I’ve waited 4 years to do. I seriously can’t wait. I get to open my very first Maya created Mother’s Day gift! This past week at school Maya and her classmates got to make gifts for their moms. The gifts were sent home yesterday wrapped in tissue paper and tied up with a bow. Maya could hardly contain her excitement about having a gift to give me that she had made all by herself. She kept wanting to tell me what was in the wrapping, but I convinced her to just whisper it to her Daddy so that it would still be a surprise for me.
I remember making little crafts, cards and pictures for my own Mom for Mother’s Day at school. I remember being so excited to give her my little creations. It is truly awesome to now be the recipient of those lovingly made little creations.
I hope all you Moms out there have a very wonderful weekend celebrating being a Mom. Happy Mother’s Day. I’ll be spending my day with these two so I already know it will be wonderful.
The other day I was looking at Maya and marveling at how grown up she looks these days. She is rapidly approaching 4 1/2 and is looking every bit a little girl these days. In years gone by when I looked at my growing up too fast big girl I could still glimpse the baby she once was. These days she is all big girl. Her cheeks are no longer round with baby chub, her legs go on forever and ever, her movements so precise, her vocabulary unbelievable.
I was looking back at old pictures today trying to find a shot of Maya in a shirt that Anna is now wearing. I ended up spending a good hour looking through pictures of her as a baby and a toddler.
It blows my mind to see the transformation that has taken place in just 4 short years.
It’s funny how every once in a while I go through this moment of “where does the time go?” “how is my first baby already a big girl.” It’s like the moment you have kids time goes into fast forward.