Parents: do you remember when you didn’t hear tears during the day? Just talking, laughing, and … silence?
Fast forward to today. Do you have one kid? Two? More? How often do they cry? If your kids are like mine, it’s every day. Every freaking day!
Now, it’s not a sob fest every day – maybe just a couple tears out of frustration from Toddler if she can’t get her zipper pulled up or something – and some days it’s just Baby who cries.
But I think I’ve heard crying/shrieking/hysterical sobs/whimpers every day since September 8, 2013, the day Toddler slid out of me.
… and for how many more days straight will I hear crying?! When will it stop?!
For a person who cries once every five years, maybe, and prefers silence to noise … this is hard to deal with sometimes. I’m not a monk, but I like to hear the thoughts in my head. (Even now, as Toddler is at school on a Friday morning and Baby is napping, I don’t even have music on as I write this. The silence is rare and enjoyed!)
But it’s also amazing how fast I’ve gotten used to having crying. It really is the new normal (to use a phrase I abhor):
- Baby cries when she wakes up and I don’t get to her fast enough
- Toddler cries if I wake her up from sleep
- Baby cries when I wipe her face after meals
- Baby cries if I don’t get food to her fast enough at mealtimes
- Baby cries when she falls too hard or hits something
- Baby whimpers when Toddler plays too hard with her, especially pulling her into a laying position
- Toddler has hysterical tantrums, especially if she earns a timeout
- Toddler cries if she’s very overtired by late afternoon
- Toddler tears up if she knows she disappoints us and is ashamed or sad that she can’t do something we know she can do – even if we don’t say anything to her and reassure her it’s okay
- etc. etc.
It’s like I’ve said before: parenting is triage! We encounter crying – disasterful or not – then deal with it and move on.
But it makes me wonder … what are silent days like? Or just quiet days? And when will I have one again? Will I notice it if I do?