One hour makes quite the difference I tell you!
This last week we decided to move bedtime back an hour to 7:30. Bedtime has been 6:30. 6:30 was amazing.
When the twins were two they were in Puggles (AWANA program) and they were learning that God created night and day. Their teacher asked the kids if the sun was still awake when they went to bed. All the kids were shaking their heads no - except for Luke and Emma who were emphatically nodding their heads yes.
6:30 has been my friend and the savior of my sanity multiple times. But this summer, our kids protested.6:30 was no longer going to cut it.
Last night at about 6:45, Dave and I shared a look of desperation. 45 minutes have never taken so long.
After an entire day of screaming, whining and fighting we felt as if we were crawling to the finish line. Dave and I have to be victorious, our ranking in our family must be first. At 6:45 it was us against them, and they were winning by quite a margin. It didn't look pretty. And then it happened...
I became the Mom Nazi. Their eyes got big, they knew I meant business. They whined, they were thrown into their rooms (thrown is a figurative term for those picking up their phones to call CPS) They were ungrateful, their treats were trashed. They didn't listen the first time, they were on the naughty step. Emma straightened up pretty quickly but Luke and Lily tested the boundary.
Luke was angry and throwing a temper tantrum - he wanted Dave and I to draw Spiderman for the 567,987,453 time and we told him no. He proceeded to tell me that his heart was broken, I had ruined his whole life - blah, blah, blah. I'm glad my kids can express their emotion - but Mom Nazi doesn't care. If you want to scream, scream in your room. He was on time out in his room for 4 minutes. 4 minutes, due to continuous escape, turned into 30 minutes.
Finally, FINALLY, it was bedtime. As I was quickly (but lovingly) putting them to bed I stopped Emma. I told her she behaved fabulously, she did a great job and I was proud of her. "Thank you Mommy," she said in her most princess of voices and hopped promptly into bed.
And then it was finished. The day was done. That last hour almost did me in. That last hour can drive me to call our babysitter last minute begging for her to come deal with them at bedtime (yes, I admit I am guilty of that. She gets paid to put them to bed, I however do not!) But we crossed the finish line standing, limping a bit, but standing nonetheless.
Some days feel like marathons. Yesterday was one of those days. As Dave and I fell on the couch, exhausted as all the kids were finally sleeping, this verse came to mind, "I have fought the good fight, I have finished the course, I have kept the faith" 2 Tim 4:7 Yesterday was a battle as some days in parenting are, but we kept up the good fight. And this morning, Luke woke up with a smile.