Sunday, August 12, 2012

Weekend Derailed by my Kids' Weird Stages

You ever have one of those days where you have huge plans, then a series of unfortunate events causes your productivity to come to a screeching halt? Yeah, that's been my weekend.

I'm supposed to be sunning diapers, making freezer meals, and sorting kids clothes to pull out everything too small to donate and sell.

Instead, I finished a book series, .....

Actually, that was the height of my weekend productivity.

I think a large part of my derailed efficiency is that my kids have turned into demon spawn. (not literally, but DEFINITELY figuratively)

Monkey had an appointment with his pediatrician last Tuesday. We are on a delayed vax schedule. After discussing it previously with my awesome ped and again at his appt, we decided to give his second dose of Hep A and his first dose of varicella (chicken pox). He was irritable for a few days afterwards with some massive adult-sized mood swings, but otherwise he was doing fine. Until he had what first looked like 3 bug bites appear on Thursday and Friday, one on his lower back and one on each leg on his calf. I chalked it up to bug bites, but he had 5 more appear since Friday in various places. After limiting his outdoor time and checking all the possibilities for hidden creepy-crawlers, I began to wonder if these were the mild sores that sometimes occur with the vax. After consulting Dr Google, I am sure they are pox lesions, a side effect of the Varicella vax. The lesions and irritability combined with his current "I'm a big boy, I can do what I WANT" stage has made him a bundle of fun all weekend.

As if that isn't enough, Diva has been a DIVA this weekend. Think Mariah, Diana, Whitney, and Gaga all rolled into one and jacked up about 10 levels. I remember when Sassy hit this stage, but it was not nearly on the same level. Monkey's mood swings are not even in the same galaxy as the devastation and mania that Diva has experienced this weekend. One minute she's jumping in excitement over her friend being next door to play, the next she is whining because her friend doesn't want to play the same thing, the next she is angry and yelling while gnashing her teeth, then she is sobbing uncontrollably in her room. I swear she has a tween's mood swings, which would be hard enough to handle with a tween, but are exponentially harder when dealing with a 6yr old's maturity. I'm sure it is a developmental stage, especially since she is eating everyone out of house and home. I swear if her eating doesn't slow down in the next few weeks, I'm going to get her checked for a tapeworm.
And speaking of developmental stages, my worst fears are coming true. My poor, sweet, sarcastic Sassy is changing. Her "looks" are changing. Her face looks more mature, no longer as much like a goofy kid. Her body shows hints of the changes that will come in the next for years. I can recognize them. And I am TERRIFIED.

But the realization that she is on the cusp of the next developmental stage has forced me to be brave. So we have had several talks so far about hormones and changes. Nothing in depth or detailed. Just a general overview of the fact that her body will start changing in the next few years as she heads towards being a teenager, but we will discuss these changes as she nears them and as they occur, plus she can always ask whatever questions she has.

My mother never had "the talk" with me, so in a way I'm terrified. But, I have awesome friends and can draw on their experiences, both during their time of change and as they guide their children through the same stage. So for now, my goal is open honesty with frequent discussions about all aspects of puberty and the changes that will ensue. Some people think I'm nuts for starting these conversations before Sassy even turned 9, but it was NECESSARY. Coming from a person her had their first cycle at 9, convinced I was dying or had cancer or something, and too scared to ask my mother, I genuinely WISH someone had taken the time to discuss these events prior to me being thrown into the arms of feminine change.

But, back to Sassy's weekend issues, whatever is going down in her body has made her listless and caused a downturn in her appetite. She is still eating, just not quite as much or as often. She will eat breakfast, skip lunch, then eat a good dinner. Or she will only want small meals and snacks 4-5 times a day instead of her normal appetite. Nothing too concerning, but it does make meal planning difficult. Today we decided on Chinese takeout for lunch and I purposefully ordered smaller portions of the "Chinese chicken nuggets" (read-sweet & sour chicken) and lo mein because I knew she would not eat as much as normal. And her listless mood has caused it to be much more difficult to motivate the girls to go through their closets. All she wants to do currently is lay around and draw, color, read, or watch tv. Which does sound much more pleasing than cleaning out closets actually.

So, all the children in the household are dealing with various developmental crap that has made all my weekend plans disintegrate. Hopefully we can get back on track this evening and get at least a few things checked off the to-do list. But I'm not holding my breathe.
In the meantime, I will soldier on with my listless Sassy, my diva-riffic Diva, and my mood-swinging Monkey. At least I should get some giggly toddler time while I'm waiting for the mood to swing the other way.

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