Click here for last week’s update.
Oh Alex, what have you done to us all? Last week your TV challenge update, and might I say other blog posts, were quite heart wrenching. While I don’t share all the challenges that you are facing, this last week has been tough.
I have not had a good night’s sleep in over a week (and this is not by choice either). It is 6 hours or less and is full of frequent, momentary alertness. I am tired, no exhausted, ALL of the time. And while last night was the first real stretch of sleep I’ve gotten, I got a wake up call at 5:30 from the little guy and we haven’t slept a wink since.
I never turned the TV on once when he was awake (hey, the challenge is TV for the kids, not for the adults – BACK OFF!). We were at the in-laws on Saturday and they ALWAYS have the TV on. I tried turning it off, but it kept turning back on. Trying to explain to them that I want the TV off to help his cognitive development and for a blog challenge is like them trying to explain to me why a jar of liquor, grass, and ground up seahorse will cure all ailments. There are language and cultural barriers there people. But luckily it wasn’t Sesame Street or cartoons, so he didn’t pay a lick of attention to it and proceeded to run around the house touching all the delicate breakables and pulling down curtains.
I thought more about the horrible voluntary lack of TV this week than I did in the first 2 weeks, combined. Does that mean I did fabulous activities and adventures with Buggy to replace TV time? No, I was too tired. We haven’t played in the pool, we went to the park once, we haven’t been to water play at the botanical gardens. We did make it to story time at the public library… barely. What have we been doing? Playing in the family room, kitchen, and upstairs. There is nothing wrong with playing at home. But toddler’s seem to enjoy getting out a little more than their previous selves. I have been laying on the floor, bed, couch watching my son play and joining in with him. I have been praying for a good night’s sleep – a lot.
And in all this home time and laying around, what have I truly done? I have learned how ugly a color tired is on my mothering. I will watch my son play for a stretch of time (longer than I care to admit) and realize I have not said one word to him the entire time. And we have a check-up in 2 months where his doctor is expecting 3 to 10 words and he can only say “uh-oh”. Way to go Mom! (I know a lot can change in 2 months. In the past 2 months he has gone from taking his first hesitant steps to running where he wants to go. But I can’t help but be anxious. It’s called being a mother that cares about the healthy development of her child and convinced she is preventing it.) And I definitely noticed that we haven’t played in the pool, or gone to the park in the mornings for a walk, swing, and round in the dirt. I’ve noticed and he’s noticed. And I feel bad. But I also still feel very tired. So tired some days I shed a few tears thinking about just how tired I am.
One question for you Alex. Did you know that just 4 weeks of this challenge was going to be a detox? Cuz that’s what it feels like. I’m thinking we need an extension – so our hair can grow back, our blog posts can return to upbeat and whimsical, and we can prove that Babysitter TV is NOT a drug for us (anymore)!
So semi-success yet again. But I don’t feel much like celebrating. I’m ashamed of the other mistakes I have made this week. Turning on the TV would have been the smallest act of parenting laziness. But I have started making progress again. In admitting this to myself, we played in the pool yesterday afternoon and just got back from the park this morning.
Can’t wait for this next week!!!! (There is a big cheesy smile on my face right now.)