The last few weeks, ok maybe the last four and a half years, have brought about so many challenging times with Missy that sometimes I lose sight of all that she excels at. Every child is different, we all know that, but I don’t really think I was geared up for how mentally difficult raising kids genuinely is. You hear all about and know babies are sleep thieves, and the baby brain is a great excuse for a lot of things, but now that Missy is four and a half, and toilet training remains a traumatic memory etched in my brain forever, we’re faced with a whole new battery of challenges. Side note; Junior will be in nappies till he’s six or seven; I can’t do that again!! Starting school in September and a new child care arrangement has brought some of Missy’s struggles to the surface. Kids don’t like change and Missy really really does not like change. We’re making plans and getting help and that’s a story for another day.
Today, I want to remind myself for Missy’s sake all that thrills her, all that makes her laugh, all that brings the sunshine into our days. Because sometimes in the middle of the midweek madness, when the morning rush isn’t going to plan, or the crazy hour in the evening is too much, I forget about all that is great about Missy. I just want her dressed, I want her to eat up quickly so I can hit the road before too much traffic delays me getting to work. That’s how my mind works four days a week, everything is timetabled and it’s incredibly frustrating for everyone. I hear on the radio that teachers and sports coaches can see a significant increase in anxiety among both kids and parents. It’s no surprise. With the drive for a career and mortgages to pay, everyone feels the heat.
So, stop, breathe (I seem to always be saying this!), and just live.
Arts & Crafts
Well, lads, if I ever want a few hours of peace and quiet from Missy all I have to do is lay the colours out along with endless paper, some shapes, stickers, glue and scissors. She’s off into her own little world. She doesn’t make a peep. She‘s transfixed by the want to create something. Like mother like daughter. The teacher in her new school has said she’ll make sure to have some colours on standby on the first few days of school to help Missy feel at ease. The only downfall is I have to sneak a lot of “art” into the recycling bin every other day and I‘m pretty sure we’re the cause of death of at least 100 trees so far!
Lookit, who doesn’t like some downtime? Until Missy was two, I thought she was a little mad for not liking TV. Ha! I needn’t have worried. It’s more stereotypical now, in that she looks for the TV while I put Junior down for his nap or after a hectic day at creche. Apparently hanging out with your friends all day and having the chats and occasional heated debate takes it out of you. But why am I happy about this you might wonder? Well, I absolutely love a good long cuddle with Missy on the couch. Granted, her attention is 90% on the TV, but we do have our quick chats. We’ve even treated ourselves to breakfast and movies in bed on a rare occasion.
Jumping & Climbing
I myself have a fear of heights. Well more a fear of falling from heights, but that’s kinda the same thing, right?! But thankfully Missy & Junior haven’t copped on to such a thing. We don’t have any trees near us worth climbing, but there’s no climbing wall, frame or ladder that scares Missy. She is more cautious than her lively crazy brother, but can nevertheless take on any slide no matter how high and has done so from an early age.
Her baby brother
My heart melts every day when I see how mad Missy is about Junior. He hits her, bites her, pushes her, follows her, wants whatever she’s holding. He really harasses her a lot every day. There’ll be tears and hiding from him behind my leg, but she always just wants to see him happy. She’ll willingly offer Junior whatever she’s latched onto herself just to make him happy, even if it’s only temporary. Anything for a peaceful life.
Obsession with Numbers and Letters
This both thrills me and frightens me. Missy is so determined to learn how to read and write. She gets more kicks out of learning to write than “reading” kids magazines. I’m going to sound boastful here and I don’t care in the slightest, but she‘s writing her own name, and Juniors, and writing birthday cards to her grandparents. Of course, she’s a genius in the making :-) . But I’ll admit spelling is not my forte. So when we’re strolling around Lidl and she‘s asking me to spell “elephant” or “banana” my heart skips a beat. Like, when do the “an“‘s stop in banana!
So there you have it, just a handful of the greatness that makes Missy, well, Missy. She‘s growing up way too fast for my liking. We’ve asked her to stop, so she can fit in her Dad’s pocket, but she‘s having none on it. She‘s ready for the big bad world of big school. Are we?