We had a really rough weekend not too long ago. I won't go into the details, but it left Jeff and I reeling, and asking some really hard questions.
Later that week, things improved and have been stable, though certainly not perfect, since. Still, whenever Moe is awake, we are on guard. We are always watching to make sure he isn't about to get into something he's not supposed to, or hurt himself or someone else. Even when he's calm and happy, he's pretty needy. I supposed we all are, but we are able to help ourselves or at least communicate what we want. Moe communicates by leading you to where he needs to go, or showing you what he wants or, if frustrated, whining or shouting or worse.
When Jelly says "I'm hungry," I can say "Just a minute and I'll get you something." I finish what I'm doing and then help her. When Moe is hungry, and points to the kitchen, there's no "just a minute." And I get it. If he doesn't understand the concept of "wait a minute", and I don't get up right away, he's anxious that he's not being understood. If I'm watching Moe, I can't stop and finish the sentence of the book I'm reading or help Jelly through one more math problem on her homework. I have to get up and take care of him or risk an escalating situation.
Despite the challenges, there are still many moments of laughter and love. This morning when Moe woke up, he came straight into bed and snuggled with me. There were no demands, no iPad between us or guessing game as to what he needed. Just me and my son. Those moments don't happen nearly enough, but they do happen.
I have a hard time letting those moments carry me through the tough ones. Even now, after 9:00 at night, I had to take a break from writing this to go help Moe through a meltdown. And when the day ends on a bad note, or there are rough spots during an otherwise good day, it is hard to brush it off and move forward.
I think the people who are most successful at finding peace and happiness through challenging parenting journeys are those who are able to live in the moment, leaving the tough spots behind when they're over and fully relishing the good moments when they come. It is something I'm working on.