There’s this mother in my ward who has two young daughters with the most beautiful, intricate hair-dos every Sunday (you know who you are)! I’m pretty sure if she and her girls knew how often I stare and oggle over their heads, they might be a little freaked out. For reals.
I don’t know how she gets them to sit still for long enough to do it because when I try to do anything with Chelsea’s hair? It’s gotta take 1, maybe 2 minutes or less.
About a week ago, I got lucky that Chelsea was interested enough in playing with my phone that she would hold still. I got even more lucky that it turned out as good as it did the first time. Naturally, I documented the momentous occasion, so that said amazing hair-mama could see my handiwork and be proud!
This girl has been in a “The Little Mermaid” kick recently. Almost every morning she asks for “Little Mermaid and apples please!” and then again in the afternoon (I can only handle the movie and an apple once a day).
This is her face when Ursula is about to vaporize Ariel.
There are a few things I’ve learned about Chelsea (and myself) recently, plus some Chelsea-isms that I like to share on Twitter:
“When I am big, I have pink hair. Daddy have blue hair, Alexa have blue hair, and Mommy has purple hair.”
Dad: “you're a nerf-herder.” Chels: “I'm not a nerf-herder. I'm Chelsea!”
*bam* “Sorry wall.”
"We're all kind of funny."
“I’m sorry about that!”
“I love you Mommy!”
Chelsea is potty trained (has been for quite a while, actually)! It didn’t take too long to get her there, but there were some accidents in the process and a lot of tries and give-ups at the beginning (we probably started trying about three times before we finally stuck with it). However, she doesn’t like to be told to go to the potty. This has been a little frustrating when we’ve been getting ready to go somewhere and I don’t want to take a potty break, but I learned that I need to let her be in control. If she needs to go, she will go. She still wears diapers to bed. I’m not ready to tackle that monster yet.
I swear that girl is ready for a for-real bike. She has great balance and now knows how to pedal!
She is really sweet when it comes to other’s injuries. She is very concerned about others and their feelings and is always ready to help by getting a band-aid, giving a hug, and saying, “I’m so sorry you have an owie.”
She is the best at making miss Alexa laugh! I love hearing their little giggles at each other at various moments in the day. The other night I put them both to bed, but I guess neither were very tired because I could hear them giggling and squealing in delight for nearly a half hour! I love it.
She was looking for a show to watch on my phone on Saturday and found… the teletubbies. Shoot. me. now.
No-nap-Chelsea is, simply put, awful. And here is where I’m going to share an experience and something I learned today…
. . . . .
This morning, I took Alexa with me to a friend’s ward whose baby was being blessed. There was a Senior Couple who had just been called to serve a mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day-Saints to Italy who spoke as well. The first speaker shared a story about two men in a hospital. Both had health issues that required them to lie down all day, but one man was allowed to sit up for one hour each day. This man’s bed was positioned next to the window, and every day when he was allowed to sit up, he would relay to his hospital roommate the things he saw out the window. He told this man about the sparking blue water on the pond, the ducks diving for fish, the couples walking hand-in-hand, and the sun glimmering all around. The second man grew to rely on these precious hours that he listened to the descriptions offered by the first and would close his eyes imagining all the beautiful sights of the outside world.
After a time, the man by the window succumbed to his illness and passed away. When it was appropriate, the second man asked the nurse if his bed could be moved over to the window, to which they agreed. With great effort the man propped himself up on his elbow and looked out the window. There outside the window, he saw a blank wall. He lay back down and wondered out loud to the nurse why the man would tell him all those visions of the pond, the ducks, and the couples. The nurse replied to him that the first man was blind and had never even seen the blank wall.
This first man is an example of compassion. Each day of his stay in the hospital, he spent one hour sharing some beauty with the second man lying in bed.
After hearing this story in the woman’s talk, I was impressed that compassion was the thing that I needed to be praying for. I think as frustration and monotony has come, that over time, I have lost some of my empathy. I determined that I would remember to have compassion on my daughter and remember that she is only two years old and to have realistic expectations.
My first opportunity to really exercise compassion came not too much later right after church when I was getting both girls to the car. With great effort and some howling, wailing, and hitting from an unhappy toddler, I pulled Chelsea along behind me through the parking lot to our car. I buckled in Alexa and then buckled in Chelsea who continued to wail. Once she was buckled in, I closed the doors and took a moment. I thought to myself, “What would Jesus do?” Well, first of all, he wouldn’t be in this situation because any child would want to be where he was, because they loved him. But that didn’t mean it was too late for me to do something about the situation I was in.
I went around to the other side of the car again, unbuckled Chelsea and sat her down on my lap in the front seat. I hugged her, rubbed her back, and talked to her very calmly, discussing the trees, the sidewalk, the birds, and other wonders of nature. We both settled down and what started out as an ugly experience turned into something beautiful for the both of us.
Even though being a mom can be really, REALLY stressful and extremely trying, it is so worth it.