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I have a wonderful, inquisitive, intelligent, feisty DD that is almost 3 years and a 9 month old DD. Both require lots of time and attention and it seems I am constantly getting irritated with DD1. She is so quick and always getting into things she shouldn't. We moved recently and are still in the process of toddler proofing the house. She also is testing the limits constantly, especially when it comes to her sister (hitting, pushing, pulling etc.) She is so smart of really such a wonderful girl that I love immensely. I feel terrible that I am always scolding. I am also trying redirection, but I feel tapped out and that I am not approaching each day with her as a joyful one. I want ideas on how to refocus when she has pushed me to the limits (I am also constantly holding the baby as she is very needy in that way). I love being able to stay at home with both of them.
 

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I'm with you momma, these days I am feeling really overwhelmed with a 3 year old and (almost) 1 year old.

Do you have any opportunities to spend special time with your first? We have mommy days once or twice a week and I find that those really help - sometimes we just go to the park alone, take a walk, take 20 minutes to read books..and other times we do field trips. Today I have a mothers helper coming to watch DS and I'm taking DD and her friend to the botanical gardens to run around. Even those times in the car where we can talk are nice..but yeah, totally overwhelming. Sometimes I want to throw them both in the pack and play and run around the block screaming.

Are you getting enough sleep? I ask because I haven't been lately with bed times gone awry with the summer parenting hours, and that alone makes me incredibly testy. I am trying to get us back on track and last night I was successful BUT my DS woke up at 4am ready to party, so I'm pooped this AM.

I think reminding myself that it will get easier is what gets me through, that and stress away roll on essential oil, ha!
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chloe'sMama View Post

I am also trying redirection, but I feel tapped out and that I am not approaching each day with her as a joyful one. I want ideas on how to refocus when she has pushed me to the limits (I am also constantly holding the baby as she is very needy in that way). I love being able to stay at home with both of them.
Though it may seem counterintuitive, I would suggest that you STOP holding as the ideal "each day a joyful one". Realistically, you're going through a tough time right now, so to further dump on yourself that now you must feel even more like a failure because you weren't farting rainbows while your 3 year old hit her sister or trashed your just folded laundry pile only makes the problem worse. As much as reading about other people's cheerful (in the book anyway) martyrdom might give us warm fuzzies, I think over the long haul we stay saner if we acknowledge and accept that sometimes...well...sometimes dealing with small children is draining and frustrating. I found that then and only then could I think forgive myself and thus learn more patience for my kids.

I had twins 17 months after my firstborn. I wouldn't have traded being home with them for the world but sometimes I DID have crappy days. Some days one or more of them DID act like brats, and I considered it a success that I made it through the day with most of my hair still in my head. For me anyway, I found my sense of humor more and more as I learned to be gentle and forgiving with myself. I think with a three year old, you HAVE to find a sense of humor somewhere. Esp. if there are younger siblings involved.

As the PP mentioned, while you may want to focus on your kid first, this may be a situation where you need to do some self-care before you can do that. If you have unrealistic expectations for yourself, IMO even as hard as you might try to fight it, they tend to always get passed down to having unrealistic expectations of the kids in one way or the other. Be sure to make time for just her and you, even if it means a babe fussing-in-arms in Daddy's arms for awhile. You're going to have to be patient with yourself and her though, moving is exhausting in and of itself, you're still in the process of changing the environment, ect.
 
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