Wrote this post a few months ago but never hit “publish.”
I’m not so much a person who goes through phases. In fact, I’m a bit the opposite.
Slow and steady. Make a commitment. Stick to it.
I’d rather jog 30 minutes, three days a week, than train for one marathon and never run again.
I’d rather keep my hair blonde and short than switch my color and cut on every whim.
I’d rather invest in a pair of skinny jeans that I’ll wear for two years than a trendy bag I’ll get tired of.
So, it may not be any surprise that I’m baffled watching Anna go through phases that seem to change daily.
One day she won’t stop saying “Da Da Da” over and over and over again. The next week? Nothing.
She’s obsessed with carrots! Can’t get enough of! Then, this week? As the spoon creeps towards her mouth she gives me these sour looks that very easily communicate one thing and one thing only: “You have GOT TO BE KIDDING ME if you think I’m going to eat that stuff.”
She was sleeping through the night, like, all the time. And now, for weeks, she hasn’t been. There are no patterns to the madness. Sometimes she’s up at 1:00am; other times it’s 4:30am. Sometimes she refuses to go back to sleep without eating. Other times I can put my hand on her little chest and say, “Go nigh nigh Anna” and she miraculously listens to me like I’m God or something.
And napping? Oh, I could write an essay on napping. No matter what I do-and I mean I’ve tried everything-I cannot get to her to nap consistently. Somedays she’ll take a 2 hour morning nap. The next day? 45 minutes. I’ve looked for patterns. I’ve tried less stimulation, more stimulation, less to eat, more to eat, more room heat, less humidifier, no noise, white noise. IT DOES NOT MATTER. She does what she wants to do.
I’ve come to a new realization. The hardest part of being a mother is not learning how to keep up with all of her phases, it’s accepting that she’s her own person. I can guide, I can lead, I can suggest, I can discipline but when all is said and done, Anna is Anna…created by a loving and merciful God who gave her unique gifts, talents and struggles.
If I can get over the power struggle and learn how to guide her wants and desires, I think we’ll both be better people for it.
post note: Anna has since learned to nap consistently and sleep through the night. On Monday, however, she forgot she likes to nap and has been protesting a nap schedule like she did in her newborn days. She still hates carrots.