I know it’s going to be hard from the start but it turned out to be tougher than expected. The past few days since Hubby left have been hectic, crazy and non-stop. We have had our fair share of meltdowns and tantrums. We meaning me, E and Xan. My screams have become a regular noise in the neighbourhood. An ugly scene. I’m not proud of myself.
It’s 11.45pm, I’m mentally and physically exhausted, and my eyes are swollen from crying. I threw a huge tantrum just now. I miss the Husband. My 3-year old son comforted me. He’s handling the temporary separation so much better than me. I’m ashamed.
It’s tiring and challenging. Though we are blessed with a great Aunty helper who is ever so understanding and caring this time around, there’s only so much she can do. She can’t mother my kids. The kids want me. They prefer me. And they want me all to themselves. Now. Yes, they mean Now. This and that, that and this – it’s all about “I want, I want, I want!” But there’s only one me. And I only have a pair of hands.
It’s overwhelming. I’m stressed out. I get frustrated easily. I scream at every mistake or whine he made. It’s not me and I really dislike what stress has turned me into…a mommy monster.
To think about it, E has been behaving ever since Daddy flew off. I didn’t. He bonded with Aunty almost immediately, didn’t protest (like he usually does) in the shower, self-fed himself during mealtimes and politely asked me to feed him once I’m done eating. He even let the Aunty do things for him, which is very unlike him as he doesn’t warm up to new people easily, let alone allow them to be part of his routine. He was -all in all – very much cooperative. But I wanted more. It wasn’t good enough. I jumped at his flaws. When he was too slow, I started counting. When he made an accident (pee/poo), I interrogated him incessantly. When he started whining, I shouted at him. I threatened him with cockroaches, no this and no that. The worst was threatening to cancel his birthday party. How could I even give him the inkling that I may take away something he has been anticipating so much?! Nasty mom. Horrible, horrifying, horrendous.
After days of such drama at home, I finally kicked up a fuss and broke down. In front of both my kids in our room. E looked worried. Very puzzled. He said, “Don’t fry, don’t fry, no frying Mommy”
“I miss Daddy. And I’m sorry for shouting at you.”
He paused for a moment and replied, “It’s okay. When Daddy is ready, we go Dubai okay? Don’t fry. No frying in my house.”
“I’m sad. Why no crying in your house?”
“Because…because I want you to read this book for me.”
He was holding the ‘Monkey Manners’ book he just borrowed from the library this afternoon.
Still sobbing, I told him: “Mommy is sad. Give mommy a minute please.”
“Okay, I read to you okay?”
And he flipped the page one by one, pointing at the pictures and creating his own version of understanding.
After I have calmed down and read him several stories, I said to him: “Mommy is sorry for shouting at you. Please forgive Mommy. Always remember that no matter how much Mommy is angry at you, or how much you think you make Mommy sad, Mommy love you a lot – big big lot. Always always always love you very very VERY much. To the stars and back. All over the world!”
Then I asked, “Are you still angry at Mommy?”
He said “No.”
Just before he fell asleep on my tummy, he suddenly shoved his Tiny finger to me and quipped, “Pinky promise, Mommy?”
“What’s the promise?”
“No more shouting.”
I’m embarrased I needed a 3-year old to remind me of my manners.
Stuck on the mirror of my dressing table now is a colourful note in point form, serving as a reminder to me:
1. Keep calm
2. Be patient
3. No shouting
4. No threatening