When does it get easier? (This just may be a vent) - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 28 Old 03-11-2011, 01:35 PM - Thread Starter
 
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This will probably be very stilted because I am that tired today.

My kid is probably perfectly normal but he is making me crazy. As if being stuck in this freaking house is not enough of a recipe for insanity.

Here is a snapshot of my days:

Kiddo, get down off the table! Don't suck on the windows. Please stop hitting the cat. Don't throw your toys at me please, its not polite. No boobie right now, no boobie right now, no boobie right now, no boobie right now! Are you hungry? Again? Please don't throw the potty across the room. Bring your potty back here please. Please don't bang on the windows. Please put that back. Please put that back. Put that back. Put it back! I'll read you a book in a moment after I drink my coffee. Eeek watch the coffee kid! Crap.

Yes that is your train. Yes that is the cat. No you can't have chocolate. Oooh look a truck! Another truck. Yup another truck. Another freaking truck. Yeesh...what a shock, a freaking truck. Truck....uuugggg.... No boobie right now...don't hit me please. Please don't climb me...hand out of my shirt please.

Rinse, repeat.

I am increasingly feeling totally fragmented, like my brain is being torn in pieces by trying to keep track of my 20mo old and do...anything...at the same time. To the point where my eyes are almost constantly twitching and I sometimes have to pause and think about breathing, because it feels like I can't. He never lets up. And if I try to do anything like make a very needed cup of coffee or start dinner then he howls and shrieks and trys to climb up my legs. Over and over...

Its getting to the point where I can't even stand to be touched. And then of course DH comes home and talks about how we never have sex anymore. And I'm like duh.gif.

Being a parent sucks.
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#2 of 28 Old 03-11-2011, 02:03 PM
 
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hug.gif I can totally relate to trying to cook dinner with DS climbing up my legs and screaming. I do found that if I stick him on my back in a mei tai and let him watch from there I can get a reprieve. I'm also definitely getting a learning tower next time I get paid (I think he might like that)

My little toddler boy is in constant motion - in fact if he stops moving I start wondering what's wrong. redface.gif

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#3 of 28 Old 03-11-2011, 08:29 PM
 
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What is a learning tower, please?

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#4 of 28 Old 03-11-2011, 08:55 PM
 
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This is the original Learning Tower.

 

But if you're handy you can build one, like Ana White's Little Helping Tower. Its on the to-do list!


Happily married, with DS 08.2010
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#5 of 28 Old 03-11-2011, 09:50 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I like the idea of a learning tower, but I don't want my kid to have easy access to the countertops. Not yet, and certainly not when I am using a knife. He's already figured out how to use the kitchen chairs as his own personal "learning tower" anyways. Which is another thing that makes me crazy actually. Because its not physically possible to hide all the things he can hurt himself with. And he is too young to understand why he can't touch. And he runs about too much for constant supervision. So I'm always dizzy.gif.

I used to put him into the Ergo to settle him down, but this doesn't work anymore either. He throws himself from side to side with gusto and grabs at anything and everything nearby. So obviously the Ergo no longer keeps him safe or me sane. I am afraid he is going to fall out (is this even possible?) or knock me over (this almost happened the other day) or grab something dangerous/breakable (this has happened too). In fact the grabbing at stuff makes me splat.gif, especially at grocery stores because he throws anything he grabs directly onto the floor. Hard. And since he can now reach the groceries behind him in the cart (and I can no longer use the Ergo) it makes shopping reeeeealy "fun".

He also loves to try and throw stuff in the toilet. And he knows how to flush ('cause I taught him how duh.gif).

I love the idea of autonomy. The reality is so much more challenging.

Seriously, tell me he will grow out of this in a couple of weeks or something. Oy my nerves!
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#6 of 28 Old 03-12-2011, 05:33 AM
 
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Aww hugs! I had to laugh because so much of that dialogue sounds SO familiar to me for some reason! My DS, 17 mos., gets exactly like that sometimes, maybe not as constantly hyperactive as yours though. I think it is normal little boy behavior. They just can't contain it!

My 2 cents: it sounds like you really need to get him out of the house somewhere he can run around and explore a new environment. If you are able to. Some ideas: a park or playground, childrens section of the library, the mall, the zoo, a big hardware store like Home Depot, a friend's house. We don't get out every day, but when I manage to take him somewhere interesting for an hour or 2, it makes a huge difference. He tires himself out and sleeps great after a fun outing.
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#7 of 28 Old 03-12-2011, 05:35 AM
 
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Hey, we gave birth to the same child! Except replace train with baby or fairy. My 25 month old daughter is exactly the same, she's always been very high needs, moody, dramatic etc.

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#8 of 28 Old 03-12-2011, 06:19 AM
 
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I have two of them running around who work on the same wavelength.  :) Since one is approaching <please put the cat down> three, I don't think it's necessarily outgrown soon. 

 

Sanity saver number <we do not choke the cat!> one for me has been to have our living room, my bedroom, and the very long hall in between baby/toddler proof.  There really <the computer is not for climbing> is  almost nothing that can get into in these rooms.  The other rooms that are less toddler-friendly are gated off or <off the table> have doorknob covers limiting access to those of us old enough not to try to flush either jewelry <I said off the table, climb on your slide instead please.> or a family pet down the toilet.   

 

Sanity saver number two is to get out.  Once they <Please take off my bra.  It isn't your style.> reach a point where they are driving me insane, it's <I said take off the bra, it doesn't go around your brother either, Give me that.> usually because they need more stimulation that our home alone can provide.  A walk around the neighborhood, a trip to the park, a little nature trail, (heck, once the only safe/secure place I could find was a cemetery-  we were traveling) somewhere <yes, the dog has floppy ears, they are very soft. She doesn't like it when you lead her around by them.> they can run and explore for a good long stretch of time.  If they are too cooped <did you just drink my coffee?> up they drive me nuts, and I want to run out the nearest window.

 

Naptime is also <no biting!>  something I need.  If they do not nap, I don't get a bit of time to <no, don't bite the cat either.> recharge, and I can't be the parent <yes, the coffee table, fine bite the coffee table. Don't bite anything alive. > I want to be.  This means that naptime is non-negotiable, and if they don't want to nap, quiet time is still going to happen one way or another (duct tape?  I haven't had to resort to that yet.. I don't think I would.. :) )

 

<snacktime, I think they are wrangled to the table with some fresh fruit and I might finish this!>

 

As for babywearing, the ergo is a really short carrier.  It can't keep my guys contained. They lean/grab/poke/prod/perform circus acts in it.  A taller-bodied carrier reins them in far better. 

 

Cooking dinner?  I have a ball pit in my kitchen.  The only time it is accessible is when I am cooking.  With only one toddler it wouldn't be too hard to let them 'help'  with two it would be chaos, and the cat would end up in the soup, I'm sure.  

 

I realized during the start of writing this that I should record what was going on around me while I tried...  so everything in red- yep- that's my life.  It's grey and wet outside, and we've all been inside for too long.   

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#9 of 28 Old 03-12-2011, 11:54 AM
 
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THIS is my life right now. no advice, just commiseration. i am also dealing with a 20 month old. all day, every day it is "please don't hit," "we only throw soft balls," "we don't climb up on the windowsill," "please get down," "no playing in the dirt," "the plant needs the dirt to live," "wait, why is there dirt on the ground for the 5th time today?" etc. it is rough, especially if, like me, you have been stuck inside for a few days. i cannot wait until spring. this boy needs to run & climb on the playground. 20 month old boys are not meant to be cooped up in the house all winter long. 


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#10 of 28 Old 03-12-2011, 12:35 PM - Thread Starter
 
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ROTFLMAO.gif Oh man thank you all for the commiseration! I feel better just knowing that I'm not alone.

I totally agree with the outside time. It's something we do every day, but it is clearly not enough. Today at the park DS threw sand into another kid's face...sigh. Its the first time he has ever intentionally hurt another child, so now I have to up the vigilance at the park too. Poor kid. Part of the problem I suppose is that I am normally only good for about 15-20 minutes at the park because I have to shadow the kid so closely. He is one of those kids that will bolt for the street if he sees a truck, cat, another kid, street trash, or some invisible interesting thing I can't see. So walking around outside with him is another thing that makes me dizzy.gif. In fact just typing that out is making my eyes twitch!! I can't really trust him yet to not get himself killed. In fact whenever I see parents out with their youngsters near streets, and the kids are just following behind with no leash or even hand holding I get nervous...because I know my kid could never do that without ending up in the street.

Breathe.


Whoops kid just woke up...gotta go.
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#11 of 28 Old 03-12-2011, 10:02 PM
 
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Ahhhh, I feel ya, big time!  Sometimes I feel like my only choices are 1) I am doing something I want/need to do like cook and therefore DS is bored and clingy/whiney and getting on my nerves or 2) I am doing something he wants to do and therefore I am bored (how many times can I read Brown Bear, Brown Bear without loosing it?) or worrying about things I need to do. Sigh.  And I love this kid and I want to be home with him and I want to be present with him and relaxed and zen. . .but this age is just super challenging or I am not as good at this as I thought I would be.  He wants stimulation all the time, but then he wants to do everything himself and say "no" to all my suggestions also. Oiy.

 

Anyway, just chiming in to say you are not alone.  


photosmile2.gif Me= crunchy mama to one rambunctious toddler, born on October 1, 2009. And one sweet little baby born January 19, 2012. heartbeat.gif

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#12 of 28 Old 03-12-2011, 10:53 PM
 
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This age is so hard! Another vote for outside time as a sanity saver. It's kind of mind-numbing just following DS around the yard, but I was so glad today that it was warm enough that I wasn't stuck in the house peeling him off the toilet, the table, the oven knobs...

 

My kid is a street-bolter too. Today he tried a new trick... he figured that I wouldn't notice he was heading for the road if he walked backwards, reaaaally slowly.... at least toddlers are entertaining! ROTFLMAO.gif


“War is peace.
Freedom is slavery.
Ignorance is strength.”
― George Orwell, 1984
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#13 of 28 Old 03-13-2011, 12:30 PM
 
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I second a call for trying a different carrier - I'd check thebabywearer.com for reccomendations. Ergo has a really short body and allows for flopping around and arching out. My DS fits a lot more snugly in the Mei Tai (I have a babyhawk, but they also have a toddlerhawk, which is bigger). and I can use the straps to go around his upper back if I tie tibetan, so he really can't arch his back. hug.gif

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#14 of 28 Old 03-13-2011, 12:39 PM
 
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Honestly, you are over the hump when they are about 4.

It's like you have been on a bucking bronco for four years hanging on for dear life and mental sanity .... And then ... It all just gets easier. You boat enters smooth seas with a gentle wind moving you along.

You must find other moms to chill out with otherwise you will not survive.

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Kids. I got two of 'em.
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#15 of 28 Old 03-19-2011, 11:37 PM
 
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Yeah, starting something like dinner or making coffee while toddlers are looking for 100% of you attention is not fun.

 

Toddler mei tai and wraps really made my life sooooo much easier. I would really check out something like that (thebabywearer.com has For Sale or Trade forum, if you type "toddler mei tai" you'll see what's available). Wraps are great, if you learn back carry - you can go for a walk and wrap the kid when you feel it's needed (for us, walks are fun, but there is a point where she is getting tired and sleepy but wants to stay out and keep going, and in the process, gets cranky - wraps to the rescue), you can cook, make coffee, pee :) Yes, pee - my LO had a phase where she really did not want to sit in her chair (and could not walk), so for several days, she was on my back throughout the day and life was easy.

 

On those days when it gets really tough, can DH take LO out for a walk and can you use that time (even if it's only 30 min) to just relax, have a nap?

 

 

 

 


:
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#16 of 28 Old 03-20-2011, 11:55 AM
 
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This is going to sound terrible, but that is about the age we discovered Little Bear. My ds (now 4.5) never. stops. moving.  He would, however, chill for a minute and watch Little Bear.  We have a few of the videos and each episode is fairly short (maybe 10 min), so one or two episodes would allow me to get a cup of coffee, put a load of laundry in, pee... :)

 

Little Bear is very slow moving, sweet and positive, he never got anything negative out of it.  He still enjoys it (as does his now 1 year old sister, man things happen quicker the second time around).  If you are open to it, maybe give something like that a try?

 

And, yes, LOTS of outside time always helps!  We just get muddy and do lots of laundry ;)

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#17 of 28 Old 03-20-2011, 04:04 PM
 
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Ahh, I can relate! My son is almost 22 months old and it is constant. As soon as he started walking, I had to find a local playground with a fence. We honestly spend hours there sometimes. I pack a ton of food and just leave when he is ready to fall asleep (which, if I'm lucky, happens in the car). Sometimes we go to places that aren't fenced in, but are far enough away from roads that I know I'll catch him before his tiny little legs can make it to the road. The bolting has gotten much better in just the last month though. (repeat: it's just a phase! it's just a phase!)

I wish I could wear him but he is 30+ lbs and I have chronic pain problems resulting from a neck injury. Oh well!

My oldest was very calm that age but has been a total terror since age 3. I'm hoping it's some kind of trade-off where he won't be difficult at that age. ha!


oh noo
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#18 of 28 Old 03-20-2011, 04:11 PM
 
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*sigh* Apparently something was in the water that month because my 20mo DS is exactly the same as you describe- to a T.   I just returned from an hour of wrestling him down to a nap because he fell asleep for 5 minutes in the stroller earlier this morning and refused to take a regular nap as a result.  Instead he hits me, throws things at me, picks at my skin, you name it.  My DS eats constantly too and I have started to limit his snacking just a little because I noticed he sometimes just asks to see whether I will give something good (he isn't actually hungry).  I just offer the rest of his banana and let him tantrum for a minute or two while I leave the kitchen.  He eats 3 big meals a day, two small meals, plus numerous snacks and milk before bed.  He weaned himself last month so I can't help you there.  I am hugely pregnant now too so I am becoming slow and much less fun.  His nightwaking has gotten worse again just when we were down to 2-3 wakings/night, we are back to 5!!  I am dreading taking care of DS and a NB alone.  Yay for warm weather coming.

 

Things that seem to help: Obviously regular naps.  Outside time every single day, sometimes 3 or 4 times a day- even in snow, rain, sleet, whatever.  He needs the stimulation and we have a huge part of our property fenced so I can let him loose and just keep an eye on him to make sure he doesn't kill one of the chickens inadvertently or eat dog poop.  Just ignoring him when he is acting up every night while I try to cook dinner and clean the kitchen.  If he can't handle my lack of attention, I explain for the umpteenth time that I have to cook so he can eat then bring him back to his toys or give him something different to play with- he loves spatulas.  Sometimes I break down and let him watch Thomas or Pingu for 10-20 minutes but I try not to do this more than a few times a week.  I cycle out some of his toys so they are "new" next week and can hold his attention 30 seconds longer than the "old" toys.  Having DS "help" me with things when he starts getting into trouble- hauling the laundry basket to the stairs, shutting the dishwasher, stacking the tupperware he pulled out of the cabinet 10 minutes ago, etc.

 

I'm sorry you are having such a tough time but I think this is the type of thing we will conveniently forget when they are older and look back and miss this time.  We aren't the first mamas to deal with this so I guess everyone survives somehow.


Mum to DS1 7/09 and DS2 5/11

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#19 of 28 Old 03-22-2011, 10:41 AM
 
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Sorry you're frustrated, mama!  Your days sound like mine, but at 1pm I have to go to work, so I have a bit of a respite (if you can call it that).  I was just going to post about how crazy my 20 month old ds is making me, just for being a little boy.  He's active, inquisitive, into dangerous things, constantly tugging on my shirt or hanging onto my legs.  I'm sick with a cold and 7 months pregnant, and just hated myself today because I keep yelling at him and having horrible thoughts about spanking him.  I love blessed nap time, but that's only IF he's taking a nap and sometimes he waits until I've already left for work.

 

I know I need to stimulate him more with activities and reading but my brain is just fried most days...


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#20 of 28 Old 03-22-2011, 01:04 PM
 
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Sounds familiar, ds is 19 months.  Going outside definitely helps.  for us that means a walk or to the park.  Luckily ds isn't too much of a bolter.  Have you considered getting a leash for walks, or a gate for your kitchen or something?  The only places in my house I could put a gate would be absolutely unhelpful places to have one, so it doesn't work for me.  If I can't get him out of my hair when I'm cooking dinner, he goes to dh.  Sometimes I can get him interested enough in playing with pots and pans that I can manage, though he always wants to do it right on the floor in our teen dead end hallway of a kitchen.  Right now, if he's driving me bonkers and I don't want to go outside I run him a bath.  Then I can at least sit in the bathroom and knit or even clean the bathroom (you know it's pathetic when I find cleaning the bathroom without child involvement relaxing)  As soon as it's warm enough outside, I am totally going to set ds up on our balcony with a bucket of water and some toys.  He's really into the water play right now. 


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#21 of 28 Old 03-22-2011, 03:19 PM
 
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OMG girl you made my day! you made me laugh not at you but with you for i totally now what you mean and you  put everything right as it is and how it is! its very hard, i have a VERY active 3 year old and a VERY clingy 18 month old, and i get anoyed at all the repetive things i do all day. and im a stay at home mom yet seem to never get anything done, im lucky to cook! my patients seems to be at 0! i always want a break but cant have one, find my self having an ocassional cig, and i quit over 2 years ago (never around the kids outside during bed time if i do have one) and i have so much stress going on in my life with school, kids, new puppy, moving, the closest person i knew passed away last month too. so its hard. but the only thing i can think of is when they wind down and you get the moment where they cuddle with you want to be held, remember that when they act up! it helps some. but other than that i hate to tell you i dont think their is no cure but time and A LOT OF IT! lol good luck, if you need a online friend to vent i am here and on FB i like to vent and like to know that there is others out there not scared of venting as well!


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#22 of 28 Old 03-22-2011, 03:22 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RoamingWidgeteer View Post

This is the original Learning Tower.

 

But if you're handy you can build one, like Ana White's Little Helping Tower. Its on the to-do list!



i was wondering what they called those and when ever i talked to someone about them they were all confused like wtf are you going on about! i so want one thanks for the links going to be on this asap! lol

 


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#23 of 28 Old 03-22-2011, 03:26 PM
 
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Originally Posted by radicaleel View Post

Aww hugs! I had to laugh because so much of that dialogue sounds SO familiar to me for some reason! My DS, 17 mos., gets exactly like that sometimes, maybe not as constantly hyperactive as yours though. I think it is normal little boy behavior. They just can't contain it!

My 2 cents: it sounds like you really need to get him out of the house somewhere he can run around and explore a new environment. If you are able to. Some ideas: a park or playground, childrens section of the library, the mall, the zoo, a big hardware store like Home Depot, a friend's house. We don't get out every day, but when I manage to take him somewhere interesting for an hour or 2, it makes a huge difference. He tires himself out and sleeps great after a fun outing.



sorry for the multiple post but i love the fact you brought out going out evento a big store! i forgot that on mine, i know mine get even worse the longer winter lasts so even letting him roam around free in walmart helps! i know in our area we have a mall that has a play place that works good. but summer may i suggest walks and parks besides them getting exersize and getting out and about you do and you feel better about yourself which makes parenting a lil less stressful. i promise im done with the multiple posts............ for now mauhahahaa! ;)

 


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#24 of 28 Old 03-22-2011, 08:08 PM
 
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I'm going to go with perfectly normal because that sounds like the average day at my house. 
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by AirMiami View Post

Hey, we gave birth to the same child! Except replace train with baby or fairy. My 25 month old daughter is exactly the same, she's always been very high needs, moody, dramatic etc.



Oh poo there goes my theory that a girl wouldn't be as crazy lol. 


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#25 of 28 Old 03-22-2011, 08:22 PM
 
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I just wanted to thank you, OP, and subsequent posters. It feels good to know that we are not alone. Around 16-17 months, life with my very calm, mellow baby changed drastically. Compared to many, she is still a mellow, easy going baby. At around 19 months now, I have SOME tools to handle this, whereas at 17-18 months I was just really lost. I can see she's struggling to adjust to being more independent and capable (but not nearly capable enough to do all she would like!), Breastfeeding as much as a newborn (but much more insistent), sometimes hitting or biting, having not obviously explainable throw-herself-on-the-floor temper tantrums, refusing to get in her carseat or go potty in the toilet. Every day there are moments when I lose my patience and feel desperate for an outlet. Especially with the carseat thing. Sometimes if my husband is going to be 15 minutes late getting home, I feel venomously angry at him for leaving me alone with our dd, because I feel I can't keep being the patient, somewhat reasonable one. I know he doesn't understand the depth of frustration I sometimes feel--he has never been alone with her for 8 or 9 or 10 hours or many days in a row.

 

I try to think of this as good practice for staying present in the moment. It's really hard. It's hard to keep perspective when it feels it will never end, that you are under attack, or that you are alone with a person who doesn't appreciate how hard you're trying. For me, I try to remember that she lacks autonomy and is kind of stuck, not understanding her situation. I try to empathize out loud with what I imagine her feelings to be. (She is very verbal, so I think she understands a lot, but probably not everything.) "You are mad. You want to hold that and I won't let you." And sometimes I empathize out loud with my own feelings! "I am so frustrated right now! It's only natural in this situation. I think I need a little break. I will feel better later." I'm not sure these things help her so much, but they give me something to do other than act as angry or frustrated as I feel!

 

As with others, my biggest help is going outside to a safe place. It is typical for us to go to the park twice in a day. In the evenings sometimes we stay there for hours. We do this even if it's rainy or somewhat cold. At the park, I follow her lead and help her to try whatever she wants to do. Sometimes she just stands still and watches other kids, sometimes she spends tons of time picking up every bit of trash or putting the mulch in her mouth. But it's still better than being stuck in the house. Then we go through the carseat drama (which seems to be reduced a little when I start telling her a story well in advance about how we're going to go to the car and she's going to sit in her carseat and we're going _____), which sometimes erases all the patience I've built up while at the park. 



Mama to a bilingual (Arabic/English) and cuddly 3 year old, and planning another peaceful homebirth in June.
 

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#26 of 28 Old 03-26-2011, 07:47 PM
 
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haha, this sounds like our days.  We almost always get out of the house. Anything for a little sanity - in the winter, it's hard (I'm in Michigan) but we're frequent loiterers of stores ;) And even that, for awhile, was difficult. Our two year old hadn't learned the concept of "no touch" and "not ours" or "you break it, you buy it."  But you must, must, must get out of the house!

 

The other thing we succumbed to is television. It's extremely limited and when he watches, it's educational. But it's completely worth it if it means I can cook for 20 minutes without being disturbed. And, in that sense, it's better for our son too. If I can't cook because he's clinging to me, that means we're normally eating something that isn't so healthy.



Last of all... everything is a phase. He'll grow out of this!  :)

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#27 of 28 Old 03-26-2011, 09:29 PM
 
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Lately I have to fight an instant headache when I tell my 25 month old "no" because of the temper tantrum that follows. Not to mention the other two usually trying to get attention at the same time. I am waiting for my hair to turn completely grey.

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#28 of 28 Old 03-26-2011, 11:35 PM
 
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Cham - sounds like you kismet and I are all having the same issues. I know A's lucky i havent taken up drinking this week, with the rain. The other day i finally said to heck w it threw a jacket on him and we went for a walk. He walked all the way to WF. My back ached all night from holding his hand, but he was tuckered out!

Do you know any gated playgrounds? I know one in C V we used to frequent, no worries about running kids. Might be worth checking around your area. It definitely makes park time more restful... In fact i was at one in SJ just last week w a fence. I'll have to ask where it was (i wasnt driving). I turned the kids loose and just hung around to intercede if necessary. Much nicer than riding herd.

Cristeen ~ Always remembering our stillheart.gif  warrior ~ Our rainbow1284.gif  is 3, how'd that happen?!?! 

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