Boy #1: This kid is wildly intense and emotional. Everything is directed outward. There is no black and white. There are no absolutes (except that he is absolutely ‘the most abused child on the planet’). If Myers-Briggs types mean anything to you, he is an ENFP. He is extremely social, but doesn’t get social conventions. He comes at things sideways (and intensely). He is extremely imaginative and non-sequential. He is adverse to anything that resembles work. Everything is negotiable, and every rule has an exception. He never stops talking (and arguing), and he doesn’t process things until after he says them. His impulsiveness is stronger than most consequences. There is a reason I call him Mr. Effervescent. Nothing concrete about this kid.
Boy #2: This kid is also wildly intense and emotional. Everything is directed outward. In many other ways he is his older brother’s complete opposite, however. Everything is black and white. Everything is measured in the context of (his idea of) fairness or his preconceived expectations. Woe to the person who messes with the way he thinks things should be. He is very stubborn, impulsive, and physical. His Myers-Briggs type is ESFJ. He is curious and must try everything for himself. He is a dare-devil.
Boy #3: This kid is extroverted and very interactive. Luckily he isn’t as emotional as his brothers. But he is stubborn, physical, and doesn’t have the imagination to play on his own. He also doesn’t have any volume control. He is so. loud. There is a reason I call him Mr. Exuberant/Emphatic. His happy is loud. His sad is loud. His sweet is loud. His excited is loud. His funny is loud. His mad is loud. He is also gets weirdly shy, stubborn, and/or embarrassed when he is faced with something new or that he isn’t sure about. He needs things to be predictable and consistent. His Myers-Briggs type is ESTJ.
Baby Girl: Lola is my doll-baby. I am so thankful for her and the joy she has brought to our lives. While she may not be the easiest baby ever, she has been my easiest baby. But there is no denying the fact that a baby takes a huge amount of time and energy. Her needs are often the priority. Going anywhere is logistically so much more challenging with naps, diapers, feeding, and my arms full.
Then I am…. The emotional introvert with a very low energy level. I need a huge amount of personal space, time to space off in my own little imaginary world, lots of sleep, down time, and silence (I don’t even listen to music). Yet in order to parent well, I have to be ON, engaged without fail 20 hours a day. Focused, consistent, efficient, and able to multi-task, compartmentalize, and delegate. I need to be 5 places at once. I need to be perpetually encouraging, inspiring, loving, strong. I need to
fake be cheerful. But I’m not. I get weary and frustrated. My patience is non-existent. I find myself tearing down rather that building them up. Again, and again, and again. I let things slide and the snowballs become an avalanche.
Can I be the mom they need me to be?!
This is a perfect time to share a link to this article: A father's day wish: Dads, wake the hell up! @ CNN.com. Because I am BLESSED to have THAT dad for my children. Thank you, Russ, for constantly making it all about us. Here is a taste of the article:
5. Do things you don't want to do: It's easy to take the kids to the driving range -- because you want to be there. Now try spending the day having a tea party at American Girl. Or crawling through one of those wormholes at the nearby kiddie gym. Fun? Often, no. But this isn't about you.
(Are you sick of Lola love, yet?)