Marriage is hard.
Raising children is tough.
Not eating golden Oreos when they are in your pantry is damn near impossible.
The key to muddling through all of these daily challenges with my sense of sanity and humor still in tow is to stop and listen. I only feel better (about whatever is the matter du jour) when I'm not the one talking, venting, or lashing out at tangled Christmas tree lights (word, pjmom). Nope, the only way to make the uglies that surge within when I'm too tired, too hot, or just too human, is to not say what is on the tip of my sarcastic tongue and instead just listen. To those I love. Because when I really really listen this is what I get to hear:
Husband: Do you want me to pick up anything for you on my way home?
Grayson: Mommy, I dreamed of loving Christmas, Isabelle, and you and Daddy last night.
Husband: Sit down. I will do the dishes. You will feed me ice cream by the spoonful later.
A Shrieking Abby at 1am: (once picked up) smile *big baby sigh* smile, snuggle, snooze.
Husband: Leave this for later (hurricane of toys). Come sit with me downstairs. We'll neck. (really? neck?)
Husband: Singing (an epic rarity in this house) "All my single ladies, all my single ladies. Put your hands up..."
Grayson: I'm your special boy and you're my special mommy.
Abby: Uh ohhhhhh (and for the record - her first word!)
Nice Stranger at Craft Fair: Such well behaved little helpers out with Mommy today.
It's amazing what you "hear" when you're able to turn the volume down on the running conversation (or self-criticisms) in your own head.
Now if you'll excuse me, I'm going to go turn cartwheels because both children are fast asleep and it's before midnight! For once there is the kind of quiet in this house that beckons tip toe-ing and well, probably necking.