Today I sort of made an impromptu decision to take the kids to ZooBoo. We weren't going to have another opportunity and the weather was great, so when the kids woke up, I fed them, clothed them, and headed out for a few hours of "just us" time at the zoo. We had a great time and it was nice to leisurely walk around at our own pace. I enjoy going with our friends, but it was really great to have the three on one time as well! The girls got to trick or treat for a bit of candy and played a few games as well as painted a teeny pumpkin as part of the ZooBoo festivities. The girls really love the reptile house and other moms were laughing at me as I tried to look only at the floor or ceiling while monitoring the girls gleefully looking at all the creepy snakes. Just because I have issues with snakes doesn't mean they should!
Towards the end of our visit, Keegan had a small meltdown because she either scraped her foot or had a blister rip up and it started bleeding. I had to quickly deal with that situation, but it kind of set off some highly volatile emotions on her part. We met up with Matt for lunch and as we were sitting down to eat, Keegan started to get worked up. Johnny, her, and I were in the restroom and I was working to get her to calm down. It took some patience. It took work. It took prayers that she wasn't screaming, "I don't want to calm down!" loud enough for the whole place to hear. But, it eventually worked and I was able to get her calm enough to walk back out to the table, sit with us, and actually have a very good lunch. She returned to her usual charming and silly self and we enjoyed ourselves. I cannot tell you how hard it is to remain calm with her sometimes. She has a scream like a banshee and stubborn does not begin to define this child's attitude. But she needed a degree of levelheadedness and patience from me, and I worked to make the situation good. In those moments, that is where the work comes through. It is up to us, as parents, to work for our children. We have to teach them appropriate behavior and sometimes we have to provide them with time to collect themselves in order to get back to the correct mindset. She is 2 1/2, she is still learning, and I have to remind myself of that. She will make progress and she will have setbacks and it takes our guidance to help them grow. And today, thank goodness, it happened when Matt was there to help wait for our food and take care of Mac.
Today was a fantastic day, but it had some really hard moments. Dealing with a hurt child in the middle of the zoo wasn't ideal, but I made it work. Dealing with an upset (potentially loud) child in the middle of the restaurant wasn't ideal, but we made it work. Parenting is not always an ideal situation. Sometimes, you are just making it work. But the more you make it work, the more it pays off. My kids are amazing and very much, well worth the work!