The Tag Team
My husband and I never shout the words, but they’re what we think when we do the child shuffle: the handoff of either one or both of our daughters to the parent ready to take the mound while the other heads for the dugout. Or, since we aren’t a sports family, ready to take to the couch.
Parenting is a crazy ride that takes you on loops and dips, fast turns and false starts and stops. You must be on at all times because kids know when you aren’t. They can key into those instances when mom and dad are tired and are not as vigilant as they normally are, and that’s when they strike.
“Can I have a cookie?” ‘Can I watch a movie?” “Can I use this marker to practice my graffiti art on the living room wall?”
Too tired from working all day and keeping small children alive, we often give in to these requests as a way to get some down time to regroup.
That’s where tag teaming comes in: a partnership that my husband and I rely upon so one of us can be strong when the other is weak, where one can be ready to go when the other simply wants to stay put.
In our house, we get by through tag teaming.
When I’m too tired, or my patience is waning, a simple “please take these kids,” look signals him into action, and vice versa.
By giving one another time to take a break and regain footing on the bumpy parenting terrain, we can give our full attention and the best parts of ourselves to our daughters. When my husband takes the girls, he’s giving me time to lay on the bed and read a chapter of a book, to send out that text or email that’s been on my mind all morning, or to step outside for a change of scenery. It’s a chance to recharge and shake off any impatience or frustrations with the situation inside the house that may have been stirring up emotions or making me want to run away.
“I want,” “can I have,” and “I need” are daily declarations in our house as the toddler asks for new toys, a paint set, a bike, a hug, a dance party, to sit on our laps, or for endless hugs. The infant, just beginning to form words, will call for mama and dada, waving her hands asking us to pick her up, to be nursed, to be entertained, for us to follow her as she explores the house.
Our attention is in high demand as our daughters seek us out, resulting in a continuous give and take
My daughters are rambunctious, quick-witted, and stubborn. They have the propensity to test boundaries and catch us off guard. As much as we love their spirit and energy, stand in awe of their comebacks and questions, these things also exhaust us.
In times of weakness, when I’m at the end of my rope and my patience is about to hit rock bottom, or when my husband has run out of explanations as to why it is not okay to chase the dog around the house, we step in for each other.
‘Your turn,” I mumble while handing over the infant, our toddler runs circles behind us too amped up to sit and read a book due to the cookie and Otter Pop I allowed her during a moment of weakness.
Tag, you’re it.
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ABOUT AMBROSIA: Ambrosia Brody is a full time editor, journalist, and working mom to two spirited girls under the age of three. Her writing can be found at Random Aspects of (my) Life.
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The Tag Team was written by Ambrosia Brody exclusively for BonBon Break Media LLC.
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