Let me start my saying, I have never valued (praised) the TV as much as I did the last two days and I’m thinking many of you will be nodding in unison, because we’ve all been there.
Welcome to the weekend that refused to let up, until it did.
For some reason, on Saturday morning my 2.5 yr old son woke up in full fledged protest. Everything from there on in was a solid FUCK YOU. Getting dressed, eating breakfast, putting on shoes, walking, napping… you name it, and it was up for debate.
He wasn’t mean or aggressive, he was just being as difficult as possible. If he didn’t suggest it first, it was a hard NO.
As the universe would have it, my husband also just pulled his back and was rendered physically useless, and I had a swollen eye due to an allergic reaction and couldn’t actually medicate until the boss was in bed. What better thing to do than get out of the house and go for a walk.
Shortly after we left the house, my lil’ guy ever so sweetly asked me for a Lemon Twist from one of the many cafe’s on our route, Bonjour Brioche (sidenote: if you haven’t been there, GO.) He happily chose it himself and upon being handed his treat, HE LOST HIS SHIT.
“I don’t want a Lemon Twissssttt!!!! NOOOOO!!!!!” *Tears*.
My heart immediately went out to the unsuspecting patrons who were enjoying their weekend brunch and I quickly switched up the damn pastry for an Americano, before hauling him out of there like a gym bag.
Listen, I understand toddlers and their daily power struggle, but this was next level. Developmental milestones? Sure. Maybe. Who the hell knows?! But this guy took cooperation right off the fucking table that morning, and never looked back.
After our baked goods battle, he refused to walk to the park, sitting on the side of the road and sulking about wanting to go to the playground. Makes total sense. I forcefully carried him the rest of the way, and dropped him in the sandbox like a hot potato. He was back to his normal chill self for a while, happily playing and being generally sweet which had me already starting to erase the mornings vibe…. until, that is, we had to leave.
Since he no longer uses his legs on Saturdays, I tossed him on my shoulders and ignored the fake crying for an entire six blocks as passerby’s gave me looks of pity. Obviously what awaited us on the corner of my street, was a god damn pumpkin giveaway from Rowe Farms. FREE PUMPKINS PEOPLE.
“I WANT ONE!!! I NEED ONE!!!!! NOT THAT ONE!!!!! NOWWWWW!!!!” *Tears*.
I caved (more or less to diffuse the scene) and got the guy the pumpkin he so desperately needed in his life. Except, he wanted to be carried… and I couldn’t carry them both. So now we had a new conundrum. Child or Pumpkin? Who’s getting home alive today?
I left the pumpkin on the side of the road and walked him home crying (him, not me), while neighbours waved from porches completely unphased. The joys of city living, they’ve seen it all.
*I later went back and got the pumpkin because I’m a sucker and almost felt bad for the mistreatment of squashes everywhere.
When we got home, it was a full on food strike. The child would eat NOTHING. Not even a freakin’ smoothie.
“I DON’T WANNA EAT ANY-FING!!!! I DON’T WANT IT!!!! YOU EAT IT!!”
*Fruit shake flies across the table and into the wall*
He survived the day a handful of almonds and two spoons of soup. A sincere thank you to Treehouse for distracting him long enough to eat something unconsciously.
My only saving grace was that he still managed to nap (THANK GOD), with only slightly turbulent starts:
“MAMA!! I’M NOT SLEEPING!!!! MAMA…. I KNOW YOU’RE AWAKE!!!! I DON’T WANT TO REST!!! NO!!!” which I ignored for a good half an hour until he got bored enough to fall asleep / understand that this shit was not working. Sincere thank you to Instagram for the distraction.
Of course my weekend wouldn’t be complete without a phone-screen smashing. This happened after it was launched from the third floor (by accident, in theory) along with a series of toys that were being catapulted like nuclear bombs in revolt. They are in the basement now serving their time.
So what to do when your child absolutely refuses to partake in ANYTHING you suggest, or ask him to do, and bundles it into a nice two-day package? Apparently, you let it roll off your back.
I will tell you, IT’S FREAKIN HARD TO EXERCISE PATIENCE at this level but it’s all you can do. I don’t know about your household, but in mine … my husband has even less patience than me. Five minutes tops for our kid to wear him out and make him throw his hands up in the air in defeat. (Are men just naturally wired to withstand less bullshit?)
Parenting is hard. Discipline is harder.
And sometimes, patience is next to fucking impossible.
It also tends to fall back on good ol’ mama – don’t worry, I’ll make sure everyone gets their shit together and is happy in no time. Let me go scream into the bathroom towel though for a sec first and light my special cigarette to take the edge off.
I know he’s growing, changing, getting more stubborn and set in his decisions, but this is MY HOUSE, and maybe one day he’ll treat me as nicely as he does his nanny. Until then, gotta grit my teeth and bare it. So here are my personal battle tactics – and please share yours since we are on the battlefield together and I will use any and all weapons.
* Try to stay calm, the words you may spew in an act of anger and haste are ones that you can never take back – and don’t think your child is too young to understand it.
* Pretend to be positive (cause we all know inside you’re raging) so that your child sees their shitty behaviour actually isn’t getting to you.
* Temporarily distract with something completely unrelated, long enough for them to calm the hell down. Revisit the topic afterwards.
* Take them out of the situation so they can be alone, locked in their room, time out in the corner, whatever floats your boat. Show them consequence.
* Don’t just accept “I’m sorry” as a good enough response, because they think it’s a magic word… explain it’s not sorry you’re after.
* If all else fails, put on the TV long enough to chug a glass of wine (or bottle) in peace.
The takeaway here for me was – VENT. Unload. Bitch it out with your friends cause you know they’re nodding and sending you an AMEN. Rant it out in written form because that shit is cathartic. Get it all out of your system and move on.
Since I can’t follow through with any parenting books and methods, I’ll just leave these reminders to myself here as general rules:
Girl – Choose your battles wisely, let shit go, stay calm, regroup, follow through with consequences, explain the rules to your kid once again, and start over. Love him, forgive him, but don’t be his bitch. Be his parent, not his friend. Remember, he’s still only a child and that in itself aint easy. Look for silver linings and always, ALWAYS, know … it could be worse.
Chill the Fuck Out has really become a mantra for me now – When I learned and applied it to parenthood, my life changed.
At the end of the day, you know you love nothing more than that little terrorist who somehow manages to flip a switch between having a standoff with you in the kitchen, and begging for snuggles on the couch.
And that’s exactly what happened. My son magically awoke from Sunday’s nap like a new man; back to his lovable self and reminding me that nothing lasts forever… including those adorable little kisses.
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