Thursday, October 21, 2010
A good friend of mine also has four daughters and we went up in the mountains today with seven girls (Grace was at school).
We probably won't ever try it again, but it had specks of "adventure" written into it if we looked close enough. "Emotional abuse" is what comes to the forefront of my mind, though, and I'm talking about the child-to-parent kind of emotional abuse. Lillie cried 93% of the hike. I gave up minutes into it, but there was no choice but to press on.
She is all-consuming. When she's not crying, I tiptoe around my life as not to disturb the delicate state of peace. When she is crying, it's all I can do not to walk out the door. Hear the birds chirp. Remember who I am for a moment. The first few minutes of a fit is not bad, it's the tail end that kills me. It's the last five minutes after the first five minutes and just after the second five minutes.
I just don't know what to do. I've learned by now that she has little control over her emotions. This well of frustration is inside of her, and it has to come out. But my head hurts and my ears are ringing. Why didn't my mother (or at least someone!) tell me it would be this hard sometimes. Did they forget? Did they gloss over the details on purpose, their hands moving straight to my pregnant belly exclaiming "Congratulations" with a knowing smile on their face?
That's it? "Congratulations?" That's it? Nothing like, "you are about to be run over by a cement mixer". Or, "give yourself a few years, you'll look as haggard as the rest of us". Something that might've helped, "you may have to teach your five-year-old how to read while your two-year-old creates a crying, screaming soundtrack just feet from your eardrum".
I'm sure if they were being honest they would have warned me. I'm sure the warning would also have been accompanied by a river of gladness that they did it anyway, that they made it through.