Well, the week has been, umm, interesting? and today has been no different...
Yesterday, the babies attended a birthday party for their friend Allie. She turned 2 and they had a celebration at a local park. Brent and I hemmed and hawed about going - because we didn't know how big the party would be, and of course we didn't want to put the babies at high(er) risk for catching a bug with the weather in mid-change once again. But, we thought we'd pass by, if things were going well, we'd stay - you know...play things by ear.
I am so very glad we went!! Brent and I just love Allie's parents and have become good friends with them at church. Our crazy kiddos compete each Sunday from the back 2 pews to see who can attain the high notes in each song, who can get out of the pew between Mommy and Daddy's legs first and make a mad dash up to the front, and of course, who can burp, and toot loudest, or make the stinkiest of the stinky diapers. So, church is fun...more about that in a minute.
We popped in to find that it was a fantastic, simple, comfy party - mostly older children who could care less about our babies - and the grandparents, parents, aunts and uncles of the sweet princess birthday girl. The babies had a blast! The weather wasn't very nice out so we were in a very large gameroom - empty - so perfect for Mary Louise and David who quite literally ran around in circles the entire time. David and Allie played a game I like to call "rearranging the furniture" in which they pushed the folding chairs around the room together. David is just fascinated with Allie and always seems quite happy and content to play next to her...maybe that would be because she tends NOT to steal anything and everything he tries to play with, uhem, MARY LOUISE. I must give Mary Louise and David pats on the back though - they refused birthday cake and ice cream and instead went straight for the fresh grapes and strawberries in the fruit salad! Way to choose little ones!
We went home after the party for dinner and bath time - and to play with the wonderful party favors - BUBBLES!!! Off to bed after that - Mary Louise and David slept well...until 5am when the real excitement happened...
They were awake - and not just any awake - they were awake "for good" awake. Nonetheless, Brent and I tried - oh how we tried - to ignore the "for good" factor and just rest our eyes for a bit. But to no avail.
Mary Louise and David played until about 8am and I finally got them to nap for a little while. Brent left for church as he is in a breakfast cooking group and it was their Sunday to cook prior to the main service. When the babies woke, they were WILD.
I got them to play for a bit while I got myself ready and put out their clothing. David got angry and in a fit, threw himself into the crux of the closet door where it is hinged and gashed his forehead. I cleaned him up - actually, he was more angry than hurt as it was a spot he had bumped earlier in the week on the brick patio - so he essentially re-opened the almost healed scab.
I put band aids on the area, he pulled them off...but it kept him busy. I somehow managed to get us dressed, out of the door, and into the church just after the service started (perfect timing with babies - cut 5 minutes off at the beginning and a few off at the end and there is a slight possibility you'll all make it through the service without getting more than a mild stink eye from the unfortunate soul sitting next to you!)
Once in our seats, Mary Louise and David did quite well actually. They ate snacks, they actually stayed in our laps most of the time, and they didn't try to make a run for it down mid isle...UNTIL...David decided things were just going too smoothly and suddenly opened his mouth to let out the.most.frustrated.yell I have quite literally ever heard from him. Without warning! As the whole congregation, no doubt just as surprised as I was about the commotion, turned to stare while I walked through the back doors, David got really restless...there were only a few minutes until communion so we piddled around outside until I saw people lining up through the window.
Usually, just walking up to the front in enough to keep the babies occupied for the minute or so it takes to receive communion...of course this time was different. With the babies' increase in mobility, their fascination with stairs has become an obsession. David spotted the 3 steps up to the alter a mile away, started to wiggle and began to whine. I let him down to hold my hand and scale the steps. He did so with gusto - grinning all the way. The line stopped at the top, but David wasn't ready to stop. He tried to pull away so I quickly scooped him up. Wrong move Mom...David started to flop like a 20 pound fish out of water. He kicked and bucked his head so furiously that he head butted the girl in front of us in line. We were on the alter, people in front of us, people behind us...no way to discretely exit stage left...Fr. Jack looked up, grinned at me trying to wrestle my bucking bronco into submission while he yelled, and said, "hang in there Heather, it's almost over."
We made it through the last few minutes of the service...but not before Mary Louise ran up a side isle as the procession headed to the back. It was a circus - and we were the main attraction. All I could do was smile and exhausted smile, and feel some sense of accomplishment for just making it through.
I've heard so many times from other moms the stories of trying to calm or hush a wild child in the middle of a crowded but quiet room...in a restaurant...in church...always the same. It is always a description of inner panic, profuse sweating, flushed cheeks, utter humiliation, "please baby calm down before Momma actually pukes from the nervousness"...ugh! there's no way to turn that feeling off when it happens, but it does help to know that others understand, they've been there...and they not only empathize with you - but typically find the situation hysterically nostalgic.