What time of day do you think of when you hear, “What is the toughest/worst time of day?”
If you think I’m talking about the middle-of-the-night scream sessions by G-Man or the (sometimes) 5:40am knocks on the wall from Unit, you’re one-hundred percent incorrect.
The toughest time of the day to get through for me, as a stay-at-home parent, is the 9:30am-to-1:00pm block.
G-Man goes down for a quick catnap around 8:45, 9:00 and when he wakes up, he’s usually in a foul mood. Not sure why, I mean he can sleep longer if he wants, but whatever.
Upon awaking, it’s bottle time, so that buys me about eight to ten minutes. When he’s done eating, not necessarily done with the contents of the bottle, he’ll throw it to the side and begin his navigation to one of his two favorite spots – Nate’s kitchen water bowl or Nate’s crate water bowl. While on the move, he’s relatively happy – he’s got a belly full of food and freedom to roam, there’s no reason to be mad.
Not so tough, right?
Until the first time I block his path to either, at which point he flips the switch from almost jovial to mercurial.
He might remain happy and smiling or he could totally flip the script and turn into a whiny, grumpy old man infant. And this grumpiness persists for quite a while unless constant attention is paid to him. Sometimes Unit helps out but he occasionally forces me to be a hover parent.
“What the crap is a hover parent?” “Aren’t you always watching your kids?” The answer is yes.
Occasionally, however, I do go to the bathroom or the kitchen, or – GASP! – a room the kids are not in (momentarily). Hover parent Ryan means watching Unit’s eyes and trying to read his mind in order to prevent a malicious attack (which are few and far between) on G-Man. This is also the time of day that causes the most gray hairs.
This block of time is also rather tricky to navigate. Lunchtime falls within it’s parameters and since we’re not rolling in dough, it’s homemade lunches 97% of the time. “Well, pack a lunch and go somewhere.” Thanks for the advice. If there wasn’t 30+ inches of snow on the ground, you’re damn right I’d head to the park during this time, but outdoor parks/playgrounds and indoor mall playgrounds are waaaaay different.
Unit is pretty great as a big brother; he is a bit rough from time to time, like when he rolls over G-Man or kisses him and knocks him over, but he’s a good, kind soul. But he’s a kid, and everyone with kids knows you can’t trust a three-year-old.
OK, I’ve bored you enough. (Alana, hope it was worth the wait!) and G-Man is screaming immediately upon waking up from his long afternoon nap.