It was a dark and stormy night…
Yes actually it was. It rained all day, which I personally didn’t mind all that much since I didn’t have to go anywhere in it. And the big kids didn’t mind because it wasn’t thundering for large parts of the day which meant they could still have recess outside (we home school). Grace was doubly excited because I bought a new umbrella last night. A clear one! She couldn’t wait to go out! As soon as they finished their math, she whipped on her purple puddle boots and was out the door! Zak was right behind her, and the giggles that made their way through the rain and walls were tremendous.
They were quite crestfallen when I called them in, despite my assurances that that was just their first and shortest recess. In fact Grace had a mini-breakdown when it briefly stopped raining. With tears streaming, she looked at me as if I had betrayed her by purposely turning off the rain. I assured her that the radar promised on and off showers ALL DAY. She looked doubtful as she turned back to her desk.
For once though, the weatherman was right, and as soon as they were done for the day they both snuck out the door while Grandpa was in the bathroom. He has the opposite view of rainy days than we have. According to him they should not ever be permitted to play outside when it is raining, after all it’s wet, and cold. So all day any time either of them tried to even just step out on the porch to catch the water off the eves, he was right there to shuffle them quickly back indoors. At last, they made their stealthy escape, and spent the half hour before dinner in rainy bliss. Grace, in her purple boots, huddled under her crystal clear umbrella while Zak, ecstatic, stood in the fort above and mixed his spray from the garden hose with the heavenly downpour upon his gleeful little sister and her vinyl force field. Two children and their mother couldn’t have been happier!
But for every happy there is a miserable, and Kit was it! She wanted to be OUTSIDE! She wanted to be dancing in the rain, splashing in the puddles, holding out her little hands to catch the streams coming off the roof of the porch. The problem with being 16 months old is that you are 16 months old! Not big enough to romp and run like the big kids, she always needs a grown up to supervise and that is a challenge at dinnertime. Also tired and hungry, poor Kitty Kat lost it big time when the kids came in for dinner. After shaking out the umbrellas and doling out towels, we shut the door that she was trying to escape from. Ear splitting screams! Just total major meltdown mayhem. It took her about five minutes or more to finally stop screeching, then she nursed for a few minutes then we very carefully made our way to the kitchen.
She ended up in my lap halfway through dinner, and tried climbing my leg the whole time I was clearing the table. We finally settled into the corner of the couch and she was out like a light after barely latching on. We stayed there for nearly three hours, her sleeping, finally, though on my lap. Me reading, dozing, reading, dozing. I thought her rough patch was done for the day, but alas, no. Everything was just tougher today. She pulled at her clothes more than she has in a long time and had a mini-fit when she couldn’t get her shirt off. She clamored onto the bench at the kitchen table, but lost her balance and tumbled to the floor. She screeched at Grace more than usual every time Grace tried to cart her around like her own personal sack of potatoes. She bumped her head on something else, and all day had her fingers going in her mouth and ears. (Mostly due to the gazillion teeth trying to all come in at the same time. That’s probably what made her clumsy too, because she usually has pretty mad balancing skills.)
Daddy tried to help. He took her out on the porch to watch the rain, but he had to bring her in at some point even though she would have stayed all night. He took her with him to read to the big kids and I could hear her doing her mommy whimper the whole time. I was trying to get the kitchen cleaned up before they finished, but I didn’t make it. Out she comes and like a leech is immediately on my leg. All attempts to distract her with the cupboards and toys fail, and she is getting more and more upset.
Finally I push a chair up to the sink and fill a mixing bowl with water. She was instantly happy. She had two of her favorite things, Mommy and water play. She splashed and swirled and ate soap bubbles while I finished up the dishes and wiped the counters. Wonderful! Everybody got their water wishes wetted!
The second I took her down off the chair, the whining returned. Sigh…
Right now is my favorite part of the day though. I’m sitting here, ALONE. Everyone is asleep. No one is trying to climb me, or sit on me, or get deep pressure input by pushing on me or wrestling me. I can hear all the little house sounds that are drowned out by the thunder of our busy family all day. Aaahhhh…everybody’s relaxed at last.
Uh oh, bright lightening! Wait for it…yep, huge thunder! Sure enough, here comes the dog.