(Self) Examination Re: learning and child training Thunderstorm days

A wreck, that’s what I am

January 28, 2014

A wreck that's what I am

January has been a month of nonsense, noise and a whole bull-load of no-no-nos.

Almost every day, I live to fight a thousand and one fires. No kidding. I’m sure if I counted them, they would add up to a thousand and one more than a thousand and one.

That plus having to deal with so much nonsense from every single kid in the house that comes with the fighting, bickering, squabbling, crying; on top of my yellling, hollering and hyperventilating, in addition to the youngest in his Terrible Two stage saying ‘no’ to every-friggin’-possible-thing to say no to, making a mess of any-friggin’-possible-thing to make a mess of (just lately: our Waldo books and graded readers have been torn, the Immunped on the kitchen top has been shattered to pieces with one swift throw, the toilet paper in the bathrooms have been shredded and stuffed in the toilet bowls, just to mention a few) and the middle child regressing to join the youngest in his Terrible Two phase, thinking it must be the cleverest way to also get some attention.

Almost every day, walls and body parts get colour-markered, paper of all sorts from receipts to tissues and kitchen towels get shredded, and everything from books to toy cars to pillows and spoons litter the house. The middle child recently taught the youngest how to cut up rubber bands to make ‘pasta’ and the littlest has discovered the flush of the toilet bowl. The oldest is facing quite a bit of pressure from me to do more learning than playing and there have been far too many days of meltdowns and tantrums that also happen on his end (and I thought we were over that stage). The youngest is dishing out mischief every waking minute it’s becoming unbearable: think taking out poop filled diapers and running round the house butt naked, rummaging my wardrobe to wear ten panties and a bra over his head and smearing the dining table with the ketchup you give him to dip his sotong balls in and then his own face and his hands and legs, and then you. The three are also fighting so much they would mortally wound each other, literally with swords, clubs and Nerf guns. They absolutely love to bicker and pull the na-na-nee-boo-boo stunt on one another it would often result in a shouting match and lots of tears. During bath times (and because I bathe them together) they would spit water at one another, fight for the shower head only to drench me silly and eat soap.

Every day at meal times, the middle kid has regressed to a point of neediness that she demands to be fed or else. And the or else comes in the form of hell I get at 2am, 4am and 6am when she wakes up, screams her way for milk in a bottle and I go FML at her throughout the night. The youngest is giving me so many problems at meal times not wanting to sit still to eat and behaving like the brattiest person of his age on Planet Earth and goes “Mama milk…Mama milk!” with every single toss and turn while he sleeps. I am still nursing this 23 month old big baby with such an absolute sense of helplessness every night so that he shuts up and stops waking the family. I feel so sorry for my overworked boobs. The only saving grace is my eldest who’s taken on the role of the moral policeman, policing his brother and sister when they misbehave and going to the store room to take Mr Cane out (for me) so I can mete out punishment. His enthusiasm to end the craziness at meal times is commendable, which also means only one out of three does well during breakfast, lunch and dinner.

It’s an understatement to say that I am exhausted.

I am beyond exhausted. Why is it so exhausting to stay home with these kids?

When I was teaching in a school, I felt bad leaving my kids in childcare and have them taught and “raised” by their childcare minders while I teach and “raise” the kids at school like my own. Now that I am home with them, I’m often left to fend off the thought of wanting to go back to the old routine. At least I am getting paid and won’t be living in fear everyday of losing my sanity.

These days, I yell so much I think I’m going mad.

On days like these, I also snap at my husband and blame him for the fact that we did three kids in four years. What the hell were we thinking? What was I thinking? How is it that my life is so crazy? Why did he even think I can survive staying home? This is so batshitstressful it’s all his fault. Poor guy, I know he has your sympathy already. This man has to work so hard in the day and comes home to a wife with flailing arms and incessant complaining about how tough her job is.

How do people with more than three kids do it? I’m about to just worship the ground you walk if you have three kids back to back and more. Or if you have triplets or quadruplets or two pairs or more pairs of twins. Sometimes I wish Ben, Becks and Nat were triplets and perhaps life might be easier than this. At least they are of the same age and would go through their developmental milestones at the same time and this birth order thing wouldn’t be such a big thing in influencing their temperaments.

I’m not going to end this post with a revelation that I should Carpe Diem! and that I have realised that despite all the challenges, these are small things if I look at the big picture and come to a realisation that some day they wouldn’t need me / they would grow up / they would remember their childhood / they would appreciate that their mother stayed home. I have none of these epiphanies yet. Yes, yes, I know I must count my blessings and that I do have three beautiful lovely children – but I ain’t gonna end this post with a conclusion that I’ve had it all made when actually I’m:

a) really crumbling

b) finding myself a wreck on most days

c) completely exhausted by this mothering gig at this stage of my children’s life

d) all of the above

It’s tough.

It’s crazy.

Life’s a bitch sometimes.


I don’t know how I make it through each day.

BUT in all these, His strength will be made perfect in my weakness.

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  • Reply Desiree February 8, 2014 at 9:31 PM

    Hi MotherKao,

    Real glad to meet you in school few days back. Your blog is hilarious! And I totally empthasize with how u feel and that “don’t ask me to count my blessings when I just want to walk out of the house and disown everybody” mood. Spot on!

    • Reply MotherKao February 9, 2014 at 6:19 PM

      Hi Desiree! I know that all-too-familiar I-want-to-disown-everyone-mood, yes! Thanks for dropping by! 🙂

  • Reply cheryl January 31, 2014 at 1:33 PM

    All I can say is…you are amazing because I know I cannot do what u do! You can do it thru Christ who strengthens u!!!

    • Reply MotherKao February 1, 2014 at 9:25 AM

      Yes, and amen, Cheryl!

  • Reply Eileen January 29, 2014 at 9:08 AM

    **Big hugz mama Kao.. i been thru the meal time woes, its hell.. i know.. Speaking forth and praying what we want to see in them.. at times during their nonsense, i will pray and speak out loud to/with them. Timely word in today devotional, Romans 8:31
    31What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?

    Phil 4:13 I can do all things thru Christ who strengthen me. Amen!!

    P/S I saw u in church few wks ago, u looked slim and good 🙂

    • Reply MotherKao January 30, 2014 at 4:24 PM

      Awww, thanks for the big hugs and encouragement. Yes, what a timely reminder for me to speak forth and pray. Sometimes amidst the madness and helplessness, I get so overwhelmed I lose the peace.

      Amen, amen and amen.

      P/S: You saw me? Did I say hi? Have we met? I’m sorry but I am a sotong when I am out with my kids cos my eyes are always on them I am not aware!

  • Reply Edlyn @MummyEd January 28, 2014 at 11:39 PM

    Totally feel you. Sorry, no sympathy for Father Kao. HAHA!!!

    • Reply MotherKao January 30, 2014 at 4:21 PM

      Lol Mummy Ed. I guess the sympathy is reserved for me then!

  • Reply Jiahui January 28, 2014 at 10:05 PM

    It will get better! (can’t get worse right?) Cheering you on, from another wrecked mum of 3! 🙂

    • Reply MotherKao January 30, 2014 at 4:21 PM

      Thanks, Jiahui! I’m hoping it will get better SOONER! 🙂

  • Reply Ling Siew Ng January 28, 2014 at 8:59 PM

    I can emphatise. It is my first year staying home with two kids, and third year staying home with one. We have lots in common… Struggles at meal times (I anticipate what comes after lunch n will cook their favorites when I need them to eat fast), shower times (now I shower all of us together, including myself), fights and bickering (time outs and lots of scolding etc)… The things mothers come up with to get thru the day. Press on! As the say, the days are long but the years are short.
    I have been reading Amy Chua and it is scary cos I actually see quite a bit of myself in her. :p

    • Reply MotherKao January 30, 2014 at 4:20 PM

      The days are waaaaay too long, yes, Ling Siew! Ugh. You have two boys and I can so imagine the bickering and fights! Plus you’re on your own to do the chores too.

      I am so Amy Chua in many ways too. Wait till the kids learn music. I shudder to think what I may morph into.

  • Reply yAnn January 28, 2014 at 8:56 PM

    Hang in there dear! You have a tough job and kudos to you for doing it! Sending some hugs over.

    • Reply MotherKao January 30, 2014 at 4:18 PM

      Babe! Thanks! Much needed!

  • Reply Homeschoolsg January 28, 2014 at 7:32 PM

    One word- hugs!

    • Reply MotherKao January 30, 2014 at 4:18 PM

      Aww babe, thanks! 🙂

  • Reply Adeline January 28, 2014 at 5:56 PM

    Gosh, and amidst all the craziness, you’re able to write about it? Like I always tell you, I don’t know how you do it! The kids love you so very much, and want to get as much attention from you as possible. Hopefully the CNY break will mean that FatherKao can help you out a little more, and give you a bit of a break, before the madness begins again. Big hugs to you and your sanity.

    • Reply MotherKao January 28, 2014 at 7:25 PM

      Thanks for your big hug, babe! Yea, I’m kinda looking forward to CNY where I can outsource to any available babysitter while visiting!

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