I should clarify because, really, "stuff" is one of my ever so famous "Diet Coke" words (full of empty calories...doesn't really mean anything because it's so vague). This CHILDREN stuff is hard!
This is merely a sampling of STUFF that has to be dealt with, coddled, figured out, modified, and such.
1. Sleep schedules. I DON'T REMEMBER. That's what keeps flashing through my mind in a perpetual loop of incoherency. How did we train Abby to sleep by herself during the day? I DON'T REMEMBER. I'm stuck on this one. (And we're not generally fans of the Ferber method. I'm pseudo-attachment parenting in the non-crazy sense. I agree with this theory that you should do what feels intuitive and comfortable for you. Ferberizing is neither for us. Cuddling with a sweetie is. We're cuddlers, and for the record...Abby sleeps super great and always has at night since about 3 months and during the day since I DON'T REMEMBER. Sometime shortly thereafter.)
2. Attitudes. A three-year old can seriously mood swing. On Saturday, we day tripped it down to the State Fair and 3 hours of excitement with !!! extra excite !!! went to OUTRAGE, FURY, and general BANSHEE behavior for the rest of the day. A three-year old shows glimmers of learning how to lessen their outbursts and recover fairly quickly, but what biological purpose dose the ability to absolutely SHRIEK in the highest, most painful pitch imaginable serve?
3. Lunch time. Inevitably, there are three people who all arrive at hungry mode at the same time. Planning ahead is my new motto, which admittedly, irritates me that I take valuable time in the morning when small fry is still asleep getting snacks and lunch ready for the rest of the day and don't just sit down and play with big fry for a while. So far, this is the only way that I've figured out how to smooth out some major sticky parts in the rest of the day; I'm still working through this.
4. Behavior modification. I hate being the Negative Nelly all of the time. Why can't a kid just figure it out after one or two times? Why? Stuffed animals are the currency of choice in our household. At any given time, "kitty," "Polly Panda," "little black kitty," "pink moo cow," "purple teddy bear," or "Harry the Horse" may find themselves in a time out. Stuffed animal jail.
5. Exercise. I can't figure this one out very well either. It's hard to push 2 strollers at once (this is how too much of my time went at the State Fair), I don't have a double stroller, and I refuse to buy one that isn't a jogging stroller, which aren't good for newborns.
6. Playgrounds. No wonder parents go a little nutty. Playing with my kid at the playground is enjoyable, explorative, energetic, and at times mind numbingly boring. Admittedly, playing is not my forte as a parent, but I'm pretty sweet at reading. We read a lot.
7. Vacations. It seems like everyone and their Aunt Judy is taking small tots on vacations, which I/we were very loathe to do when we had just one. And now, it's been 4 years since we've been on a vacation (more than one night away in a B & B). I'm ready. And now I don't feel portable with the bigger one and the smaller one. Catch-22!!!
I'm sure there's more. She cries. I go.