Well, I wrote up my cute little Christmas post, and it was completely true to the day. Or at least what had transpired thus far. All 7 hours and 44 minutes up to that point really was great, being split between sleeping and sitting in the Living Room with my Mom and "Baby" Boy.
Other than being earlier than normal, it really was a lovely way to start the day. I wrote the blog post, closed the lap top, went to finish breakfast prep and eat with my family, and it all felt so magical and fun and perfect.
And there's a part of me that just wants to leave it there.
Oh, naive 7:44am Christmas morning me.
Our Christmas wasn't bad, not by any means. But in keeping with the "realness" of the blog...leaving it at my cute little Christmas morning post just wouldn't be the whole story. By today I'm kinda chuckling, but by the time I went to bed on Christmas Day I wasn't chuckling at all.
Christmas morning, the start of it, was magical. I loved it. I still love that memory, and the story of Darrow escaping and going to find Grandma really is funny to us. But after I closed the laptop I should have started knocking on wood. Maybe that's it. Maybe I jinxed myself with that post, bahaha.
The normal time frame from when Darrow wakes up in the morning until his one nap of the day is about 4 1/2 hours. On a normal day, that's perfect. But when he wakes up before the butt-crack of dawn has even started mooning the world that puts the whole schedule off. A fact I failed to realize until he'd already started to melt down as we were clearing up breakfast. By the time we got sat down around the tree to open presents together he was running on fumes and doing whatever he had to in order to convince himself that he really wasn't tired.
Looking back I should have let him take a nap then and have him open presents later. But that just didn't seem as fun to not have him open then right then and I wanted him to be there as a part of the family to have everyone open gifts. I still argue in my head what I should have done different, and have pros and cons to each option. But that doesn't change what we did or how it all turned out.
But lets just say that by the end of opening presents he was in manic mode, and I was being a little ridiculous and was trying to get him to look at the presents I made him rather than the presents with balls to throw and lights to turn on. I knew that was going to happen...it's just given. Lights and sounds trump all. Little fabric fish just don't compete. And I knew that. I knew in the hype that would be how it turned out. And yet I let my mommy feelings get hurt. By a 2 year old.
And there's not really much point in recounting the whole entire day. But you can imagine how it went with a sleep deprived toddler, a sleep deprived hormonal mom, and a day full of expectations of magic and peace.
Again. Looking on it now, just a few days later, it wasn't a horrible day. It wasn't a bad day. It was a good day. I didn't end it in a happy place. But I could have taken steps to change that. Not by what happened, but by how I responded.
When it comes to Christmas morning, the big items typically win. That's just nature. The laptop present is definitely more exciting than the beanie cap present. I knew my simple gifts weren't exciting. I truly didn't expect oohs, aahs, tears of gratitude, or anything of the sort. I just wanted them to know I loved them and wanted to do something for them. And the homemade gifts did just that. But I let myself be frustrated by Darrow's actions as a sleep deprived 2 year old, and my own pride with the simple gifts I'd made. And I let that ruin the rest of the day for me.
I threw a pity party for myself, and when I do that it opens the doors on all the other cages releasing the Motherhood-is-Rough Monster, Nothing-I'm-Doing-Makes-A-Difference Beast, and any other Pity-Creature that I keep cages for in my head. And when I say "it" opens the doors, I really should say I walk through the portals of my head opening up each and every cage myself and chasing the monster out and poking it with a stick.
Why do I do this to myself? And talking with other friends and family in the recent and not-so-recent past I know I'm not the only one that does this. So...why do we do this to ourselves? I let myself ruin a wonderful day trying to be a Pity Gladiator Martyr. Once all the monsters were out of their cages and riled up it took me another day and a half to get them caged up again, but they are still rattling the bars of their cages.
Someday I'm hoping I'll learn how to get rid of the Pity-Creature Cages in my head and to tame the beasts. But for now, I think the first step is learning to not walk down the hall and open up each and every cage just because one of the monsters escaped.
So after a little bit of sleep and working to put things back in order in my head, I'm feeling a little better about life. But I hate the 2 days that I wasted on feeling sorry for myself, especially when the catalysts were so small and non-devastating.
I wish I were ending this post with a quick list of "5 Ways to Avoid Being a Gladiator in Your Own Pity Games", but I'm still figuring that out. The point of this isn't to bum you out. It's not to gather pity for myself. But I guess really this post came to being for 2 reasons. First, often as I write things sort themselves out in my head better than when I just try and sort them out by sitting and thinking. I feel like sometimes I don't know what I truly feel until it comes out of me in written word. Writing helps me sort through ups and downs. So I write this as my own therapy. Second, because maybe somehow this helps someone...not because I gave any tips or advice or help, but sometimes it's just nice knowing that someone out there is fighting a similar battle. Fighting to get through life in once piece. Fighting to come to grips with the reality that Life truly isn't Perfect...and that it is perfectly okay that it isn't.