Thank you for the feedback. I don't know what I would do without my readers.
What I should have written in my last post is that I think my mom is great with my kids. She sings with them, dances with them, makes them capes out of blankets, puts socks on their heads, reads them books, cooks for them, and takes them for short walks in their wagon. The twins and I are very lucky to have her in our lives.
Tuesday when I got home from work, the tension was buried. Grandma and I chatted about the kids and the day's events, and she offered to pick up some egg-free waffles for me at the store. All good but not forgotten by either of us. The fact that we have to see each other and speak to each other because of the twins is a plus in this situation. We can't completely avoid each other.
Wednesday afternoon, I sent her an email. It cleared the air. For now. She took my (poorly approached) question as pointing out a mistake. She tends to take things personally no matter who she's talking to. I reiterated that I was curious, acknowledged that I could be wrong about the boys misunderstanding her, and told her that I will continue to wonder about a lot of things. I said that we have to be able to communicate. She agreed and told me not to be afraid to bring things up in the future. It's a step in the right direction.
I'd also like to add that it's difficult to detect (or perhaps for me to describe) tone in a post. The tone of the start of the conversation with my mom on Tuesday morning was light. I was delicate because I know she can be insecure and get defensive easily.
In response to comments:
I know in a day care setting I won't be there to see how things are done. It's not only possible but probable that some things would be done differently than I would do them. Hopefully for the better but possibly not. If it's something that I think matters, and I witness it or hear about it, I will probably question it. I would think (hope!) the day care teacher could have an adult conversation with me about it. Would I question a teacher who was playing that "Don't Smile" game? No. I don't feel so strongly about that where I think that would be necessary. I said it to my mom as a question; it was me wondering. There's no other adult in my house or in my life on a daily basis for me to bounce things off of. And I'm a bouncer. I like to analyze and talk things out and I question things as part of my process to understand. It doesn't rule me; I take bits of advice that seem to make sense and that work for my family, combine them with my instincts as a new mom and hope for the best. I don't lose sleep over it. Not yet.
Lindsey, you brought up some great points. Your comments gave me the push I needed to clear the air. I do know how lucky I am to be able to have the twins spend time with their grandma. I know she won't be around forever, (she'll be 73 in March), and that there is a place for silliness. I'm on the fence about sarcasm in the boys' lives right now but the real issue is our lack of ability (mine and hers) to talk about things. Also, one reason why I am considering some child care outside the house is because, unlike Fiona, the twins don't have regular exposure to other kids or a variety of activity. Their little circle consists of me and my mom, the sitter, my cousins, aunts and uncles who they mostly only see on holidays, and visits from my friends -some with kids, most without, none with small kids. (And their mama is NOT crafty or creative. Unlike you. :))
If/when I change the child care routine, it would be one or two days in a classroom setting (or one or a half day more with the sitter). This would probably equate to one less day at most of Grandma watching them. She would still spend almost as many waking hours with the twins as I do. Chances are because of Sweet Potato's allergies and the cost of child care/pre-school, they probably won't be going anywhere until they're old enough for UPK.
I don't think this topic is closed by any means. Unfortunately, for my readers, I will likely complain about my mother again. I do feel better today about my relationship with her than I did yesterday. Time will tell. Thanks for listening! It really does take a village.