Bits of Sweetness: And we thought we were lucky!

And we thought we were lucky!

I guess you could say I was one of those parents who, after having volunteered with kids for many, many years (over 7 and counting), worked at a learning center for 3 1/2 years with every age (including working with some very, very challenging children) and then nannying for two different families for over a year, thought that I kindof had it together with parenting. Andrew has been a pretty compliant child the past few years! (Add too the fact that I was pretty stubborn myself so I had a pretty good handle on what things worked and didn't for kids like that!) The 2s had their moments. The 3s had some challenges. I thought we'd made it! I mean, he was pretty good, and really, I couldn't complain. And then the 4 1/2s hit. It's kindof like, everything that kids usually go through at 2 or 3, the tantrums, the yelling "NO!" at everything, the fits, the testing every.single.boundary., the screaming loudly in protest and frustration... you name it... we pretty much skipped it. Until now. I think he's making up for all the smooth sailing!!!! And quite honestly, half the time, I am at a total loss as to what to do!! It's a little different when your kid starts throwing tantrums at the age of 4 because they are a lot stronger physically, able to comprehend way more, can climb/reach just about anything, are way too big for baby gates & locks, can try to out-logic you, have a way too good sense of inappropriate timing for a fit, and are just pretty smart all-around! Which makes it more fun! Some days we do great! Like today! We had the best morning ever, taking a great trip to the park (pictures to come!), followed by a lovely walk, and a trip to Costco where he was as good as gold the entire trip! Then a playdate in the evening and... yikes.... I think he must've tested out his new loud frustrated scream/yell about 5 or 6 times. >.< Tonight, I looked up out of curiosity how far we'd walked today at the park, and it was almost a mile and a half round trip which he walked all of!!! So, it was kindof to be expected that he wasn't at his finest at our playdate! But, this is all kindof new territory to me! And too being pregnant- not the easiest to pick up a fit-throwing 4 1/2-year-old!!! We're trying to be creative so it's not threatening him all day long with consequences, and trying to focus more on earning things, the positive, and what he can do rather than can't. But. Ahh. Some moments just make me want to take a mommy timeout. A very long one. Involving a bubble bath. And a book. And locked door. "Hmm what was that loud crashing noise? Perhaps legos being dumped all over. Again? Ahh oh well. And that unwrapping sound? Hmm must be the candy getting into again. Oh well!" Ha! I wish!! Any tricks up your sleeve for these fun days?! Or things that have worked well for you? I think the hardest element is just the fact that boys sometimes have a hard time connecting the dots, which can be a really good thing when they are trying out new things, and being fearless leaders. But. It can be hard in connecting why he can't do something with what he did to lose the privilege. It always comes back to, "But I want to listen!"(for him, saying he wants to is in his mind actually listening) or "But I want to do that (have that)" (to him wanting to do it/have it, should be reason enough to over ride what he did to lose it) no matter how much it's explained. SO, kindof hard, but hey, we try. And... repeating to myself again and again that this will pass, and, love, love, and more love. 
Ahhh... These are the moments.. Gotta love them! They make life interesting!!! Anyways, :) Suggestions? Creative consequences or positive things that work(ed) for you? Our current ones are a sticker chart that earns him a trip to his favorite indoor playland, and the other is that he earns quarters for Chuck E. Cheese by doing jobs. He can also lose either by not listening.. which some days he seems to lose more than he earns! But, all that said, I am thankful! So thankful that he is our sweet boy to raise, even if there are some days and moments like these! I'd rather endure them now than in 12 years or so!! And, I am thankful we can give him lots and lots of love and good memories of fun times together. I  just pray that he'll be able to look back and remember the laughter and love more than all the toys he lost (temporarily ;- ) ) and the tears and frustration!

Hopefully!!
Sigh.. and then there is his sweet smile and random  "Mama, I love you SO so so much!!! I just want to give you a big hug and a kiss!!" that gets me every.single.time. (Not complaining either!!)
{This cute face throw a fit?! Never!!}

6 comments :

  1. You may be onto something with the changes coming! Also it helps when he gets a full night's sleep! Lately he's been waking up early with only 9 versus 12 hours of sleep. And he's past naps so it makes for a long day! But I am thankful that I am his Mama, and no one else has that job!

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  2. You may be onto something with the changes coming! Also it helps when he gets a full night's sleep! Lately he's been waking up early with only 9 versus 12 hours of sleep. And he's past naps so it makes for a long day! But I am thankful that I am his Mama, and no one else has that job!

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  3. My boy went through a real testing (STUBBORN) stage when he was three.  We stayed super consistent and though it was a rough year, now that we're past it (six years past!  But it only lasted a year), I seriously think hes one of the sweetest, kindest, least stubborn kids I know.  So hang in there!  It gets better <3  He may sense a change coming too.  Even though hes excited about his brother he probably knows its going to be different?  Maybe talk to him about it and see.

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  4. I can't see that face throwing tantrums.  I can see him being a bit mischievous though! ;-)

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  5. Hey friend, I think it is age appropriate the way Andrew acts at times.  Like you said, he's a sweet boy mostly, so maybe when he is acting out of character, he's either tired, hungry or frustrated.  We all know kids can't express themselves properly.
    I do feel for you because I have been there and it's hard when you're pregnant and tired too.
    Perhaps a time out, 4 minutes for his age, I always did that with my son, surprisingly it worked back then...good luck xo

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  6. So relatable!  I thought we were smooth-sailing along...and then it hit.  And all of a sudden the years of child development classes and teaching came up short as I tried to rightly respond to my own child.  I have to pray that God will give insight into these two little ones He has made and entrusted to us, and for creativity in responding to those things that make you wonder if any of the right you're doing is sinking in.  Blessings, Laura!  You are doing a great work!

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