Before I was a parent I knew that kids were loud.
I was not naive in thinking that they would sit with a book and quietly ready all day. I had been to the park. I had been to my niece’s and nephew’s birthday parties. I knew that kids go to eleven.
So, after having my two kiddos (in 19 months, no less) I was well prepared for the noise.
Or so I thought.
Kids may be loud and noisy and all that stuff. But what no one ever tells you is that kids make noise
If they are not talking, they are humming. If they are not humming, then they are singing. If they are not singing they are yelling. If they are not yelling, then then are just making a random assortment of noises with their mouths.
Seriously, it never stops. I don’t know about your kids, but mine sing this little diddy all day long that goes like this:
Humm-mmm-mmmmmm, Hum, Humm-mmmm-mmmmmm
over and over and over again. They can manage to sing this little tune with a mouthful of green beans. I’ve even witnessed one of them singing it while crying, I SWEAR it happened!
I have tried to play the quiet game with my kiddos, but the mere idea of keeping silent for even a few seconds is so foreign that they don’t even understand the rules of the game. They just look at me, heads cocked slightly to the side, with a half grin on their faces. Surely Mommy has lost it, they think. The Quiet Game? What does that even mean? Quiet?
And off the go Humm-mmm-mmmmmming.
My kiddos are 4 and 5 1/2, and we still have “quiet time” every day. It used to be naptime. Then, it was naptime/quiet time. Now that they both have given up naps, everyone still heads to their respective rooms after lunch time for “quiet time.” I will hold onto this daily ritual with an iron grip for as long as I can. For an hour and a half each day the kids get a break from each other, learn to play on their own, relax and reset (very necessary for my sensory defensive son), and I get blessed silence.
Unless, of course, someone needs more toilet paper in the potty, or forgot what time quiet time was over, or doesn’t have the toy/book/whatever they wanted in their room, or, ……..
Happy (shhhhhhhhhhhh!!) Quiet Time!
This post was inspired by the novel Dad Is Fat by comedian Jim Gaffigan who riffs on his adventures co-parenting 5 kids in a two bedroom Manhattan apartment. Join From Left to Write on April 22 we discuss Dad Is Fat. As a member, I received a copy of the book for review purposes.