April 6, 2013 by rebeccaannemarshall
So I have this horrible problem with anxiety that plagues my every day, one major problem being that I over analyze what I “assume” other people “must” be thinking about me. I only tell you this because I have seriously convinced myself that my neighbor’s surely must believe that I am housing an inpatient care facility for the mentally ill… no… the psychotic.
Let me give you a little back story here. We live in a townhouse, we are the corner unit, we share a wall with neighbor number 1 and a fenced yard with neighbor number 2. We also share a street on both back and front of our home that also holds houses for other families, or at least human beings… I assume. Although it would be crazy of me to be worried about them, I can’t possibly assume that they can also hear the daily chaos that oozes from my household, right?
If you are not already aware, my children are of the lovely ages of 6, 3 and 2! It’s beautiful really, one toddler teething and experiencing the glory of the “terrible two’s”, one the “defiant three’s” testing her boundaries… and practicing her attitude… and her apparent need to be a bit of a tiny bully. Oh yes and not to forget about my little 6 year old, grade one, grown up who is a 16 year old at heart (as far as attitude goes that is)… or wants to be. What young girl does not long for the age of, what they see as, independence? (Man I tell you when I was in elementary I just could not WAIT to be a teenager, though I was ridiculously terrified of them).
Right, back on topic, the neighbors. Now I can hear their dogs bark, I can hear when they wonder up the stairs, or vacuum or watch movies or listen to music or…. OK it is certainly not as horrible as it sounds, it’s not as if these sounds are deafening, more of a dulled down I-only-know-what-the-sounds-are-because-I-recognize-the-noise-it-makes kind of sound. Having said that, I can not for one second believe them for ONE SECOND… I guess I already said that… when they say to me “Oh no! I never hear you guys!”. On one hand I appreciate that they must appreciate the fact that we have children. That they must understand that things can get a little noisy. Youknow, that they are just being nice and all that jazz. But I call bovine fecal matter on that one.
For one: My children have mastered the art of the scream. And I mean M.A.S.T.E.R.E.D, seriously someone needs to give them their PhD’s for it. It seems even, that they get better at it as the ages goes down. What I mean is that, though I always thought my oldest was a top notch screamer, she seems to have done an exceptional job of tutoring her younger sister in the art. The trend continued when we had our youngest. There is no real word in the English, or any other, language that can describe how professionally she screams. With the expertise of both her sisters teachings she has managed to surpass even their otherworldly ability to shatter glass. Now of course there is the inevitable sense of competition between the three of them. When one begins to showcase their gift, the other then feels as if they need to then showcase theirs… better, and then of course the other then feels that same need, and so on. You can only imagine the noise…. the. noise. The screaming. loud. noise.
Second case in point (and this is what usually leads up to “for one”): They are siblings, they argue. Arguing is more or less mostly consisting of, attitude, hitting, scratching, screaming, and crying. This may sometimes result in, as shameful as it is however honest, me
foot stopping putting my foot down, hand clapping, time-out threatening… and I will admit occasionally breaking down and yelling over top of them myself, to be heard of course but really only adding to the noise (hangs head in shame).
Continuing on: Time outs. Every one despises them, I feel I may hate them more then my children do. Why? Because I am just no good at them. I was under the impression that they were meant to work. “Oh what’s that beautiful mother of mine? Time out? I was behaving badly? Inappropriately? Yes ma’am, I will get in this lovely corner and I will make nary a sound.” … What, that’s not how it works?
Well what I receive, is more screaming, a handful of foot stomps, a few attitude dripping verbal swords. Some begging, some refusing, some yelling, some kicking and screaming, some pleading, some… OK you catch the proverbial drift. Not to mention all of my girls are just ridiculously adorable and every one of them has mastered that perfect heart breaking pout that is most defiantly my achilles heel. It takes everything that I am, to stick to it and have them do that time out when they pull out the big guns and pout at me like their little hearts are breaking. But you hit your sister and you called me a vomit face and I have to put on the strict suit and put you on a time out *sigh*.
Now let us move on to the fun stuff shall we? What? My children are not all just attitude wielding stompy foot screamers you know.
We have high pitch squeals of laughter, insane cackling… I mean giggles. Screams in the form of “I’M HAVING THE TIME OF MY LIFE” as apposed to the opposite “I’m expressing my anger right now” ones.
The best, of course would be, when all three of my children turn into dogs and barrel around the house on their hands and knees yipping and howling and barking. Or when daddy gets in on the action and stomps around pretending to be a monster, and the girls run away screaming excitedly and laughing in their window shattering pitch.
I mean between all described above sometimes I wonder what goes through my neighbors minds as they sit down to watch T.V to the noise of muffled screaming mixed with human barking and high pitched cackling.
Now I just want to clarify that it is not as if these things are going on 24/7. We have many the quiet time, movie watching, semi quiet craft sessions, and of course when the girls are all busy stuffing their faces with delicious food. Our house is, more or less, days spent enjoying a glorious mixture of fun and relaxation and grumpy times. Though during the periods throughout the day, when I feel like I just may go def, or I myself start to giggle over how crazy the house is getting, I can’t help but wonder if my neighbors think we are just a house full of insanity.
I imagine them terrified, huddled in the corner of their living room, waiting for the moment that a swarm of lunatic flailing arm dog-beings comes crashing through our connecting wall, giggling insanely, with their raging monster father storming after them. Nobutreally what, I wonder, do they think goes on over here??
Does anyone else out there have a home of insanity? I like to feel that I am not alone on this, I feel this is a completely normal occurrence when you have multiple children. I guess I am just longing for that proverbial pat on the back and to be told that I am not the only one who has crazy children, and not to feel bad about being what seems like the loudest house
on the block … in the neighborhood … of the entire city.
… seriously it. gets. loud. in. here.
Until next Saturday! Tata!