Tuesday, January 30, 2007

2, 9, 11

Lately, I've been noticing more and more my attempts to address the needs of my kids at the different stages they are in their lives. There's just something tricky about trying to change a poopie diaper while helping a third grader with spelling words, and listening to an 11-year old complain about not being able to talk to boys on the phone.

Can I just have one stage at a time please? I think I'd been spoiled with this. Anna and Emma are only 2 years apart and they were on the same wavelength for years. I'd take them to the zoo, they were happy. To the park, happy. To Burger King, great. Shopping, even better.
Not so much now. I find myself trying to make all three happy, or at least not miserable and sometimes failing big time. I try to get some one-on-one time with all of them, but John M. is way ahead on that game. He needs my attention most often, so he's the one that gets it.

I wonder sometimes if my girls feel slighted and I hate to admit myself that they chances are, they do. They've actually voiced them a few times but most often, don't mention it. That fact, in itself, makes me love them all the more and feel guilty all the more too. I suppose I have to look at it in the way that the 1-on-1 attention that they receive is directly proportionate to what they require. You get me? I'm not sure I do either. But what I'm thinking is that, for the most part, they seem to be content to be playing with friends, or on the computer or watching Hannah Montana on Disney for the umpteenth time, and if that's the case, so be it. Now and again, they do request my involvement in something specific, a game or homework or a project and I do my best to give them 100% when I can. I hope that's good enough. That I'm not doing any harm.

My absolute favorite times are when things just seem to fall into place by themselves. Like when they all end up in the kitchen doing cheers that they've taught John, that involve Anna (or Emma) yelling 'Big Sis!' and him coming back with 'Little Bro!' and then lots of laughing.
Those are the best. I hope there's loads more of those to come.


mamatulip said...

I feel the same way a lot of the time...I really can relate to this post, Renee.

MarkD60 said...

I imagine it would be nearly impossible to please them all at the same time, especially as they get older.
My Mom was saying something similar to me today.

martie said...

I know how difficult it is to divide your time equally between the three....it seems like one of them is always more needy than the others but it does all work out in the end. Mine are grown now, and when I ask them if they ever felt that they were left out the answer is always an emphatic "NO"....maybe they grew up in a different household than I remember....hmmmmm! LOL

BlondeMom said...

11 year olds talking to boys on the phone. Suddenly I feel very nervous. I need a drink.

With my girls being 33 months apart the differences are starting to get fewer as the baby slowly moves out of the baby stage...2 in March! Sniff!

Also, have I told you how adorable your children are lately? So cute.

Petite Mom Blogger said...

I totally get you on the age difference thing and trying to do different things or even the same things so that they will both be happy. Its hard... I'm not sure I could handle 3.

Mrs. Flinger said...

You make a really good point and something I wouldn't think of. Here I am wondering if having them close together is smart (hi! She is NOT NAPPING) and you have a totally different view point from having had it both ways.

Maybe it'll work out ok. But really, it always does. 'Cause it has to.

Greta said...

i understand what you are saying...my brother and I are 7 years apart and my sister and I are 7 years apart (i am the middle child) and my mom likes my brother better....lol

my kids are 22 months apart and can you say GOOD LORD!!!

Heather said...

Renee, I haven't been lurking around on blogs much lately I guess. But tonight it was a nice surprise to read your post and be able to relate! Amen sister! LOL
My kids don't have the age difference that yours do...but my oldest two are girls and my youngest a boy. They are all three years apart...and I understand totally what you are saying. My girls never say anything and they absolutely love the baby brother...but I can tell when they are needing my attention and sometimes it is so stressful. It sounds to me like you are doing the best you can...and that is all we as mothers can do...our best! God handles the rest! LOVE them and let them know...teach them right and wrong...and take care of them...and from this post and the posts of yours that I have read in the past...you sound like a great Mama!
Take care and I look forward to getting back to catching up on some of my blogs that I like to visit!

chesneygirl said...

This is one reason why I can't decide if I should have a second child. I think about it EVERY. DAY.
It really really bothers me that I cannot decide.
IF, IF I were to get pregnant now, the new baby and Adam would be almost 3.5 years apart.

Anyway...from what I've read on here, I think you are a FANTASTIC mommy! And that's one of the things I admire about you! :)

We do the best we know how and that's all we can do! :)

Cheryl Wray said...

I know what a challenge it can be, believe me!! With an almost 15, 10, and 2 year old, I feel like i am dealing with completely different BEINGS in one house!! The trick is to just give them all attention in some way, althoughs ometimes you will feel like youare giving more to one than the other. I know that you are doing a great job!!

Laurie said...

Just stopping in to say, "Hi!"

I have no advice for you. It'll be ME coming to YOU when Anthony gets a new sibling!

Laurie said...

Just stopping in to say, "Hi!"

I have no advice for you. It'll be ME coming to YOU when Anthony gets a new sibling!

holli said...

I'm sorry - I think a huge part of motherhood is lots and lots of guilt. And I'll be damned if I know what to do about it. But you seem to have some amazingly great, happy kids - so you must be doing something right.