Hello Wit’s End…it’s me Amy. I am here. I am currently looking for my sanity. Have you seen it? I can’t even remember the last time I have. If you find it, please send it my way. In fact, it doesn’t even have to be mine. If you see any sanity just running around – send it my way. I am about to lose it. Big time.
This about sums up everything since my last post. I know I promised cute pictures of Louisa and funny stories, well…they just didn’t happen. It is much easier for me to deal/blog about the funny things, so I would much rather have those too – but Louisa has a different plan I see.
I have a toddler. A 3 and half year old little girl with fire running through her veins. She is spunky, she is wild, she is manipulative and she is bad. But, on the other hand, she is sweet as pie. I just don’t get it. But I do know this…there hasn’t been one day in the last 2 weeks in which I didn’t want to string her upside-down in the backyard by her toes.
I think first and foremost is her sleeping issues. I wont go into detail here since I just don’t feel like it and I have talked about it before a dozen times, but if I could just have one night of sleep, maybe just 6 hours – I think we would both have different perspective. Over the years, I have learned to live with not much sleep, but now I am pregnant – and so far the only thing I have been craving is sleep. And, I don’t get it here. Louisa, on the other hand functions just fine other than turning into a fragile-meltdown-waiting-to-happen every day. She has napped maybe twice in the last two weeks. Most people would say since she is this age she is just phasing out her naps. And that would be fine…IF she slept for more than 3 hours at a time at night. She NEEDS this nap, I NEED this nap and when it doesn’t happen and then we have bad nights…we have bad days.
Byron has been in Honduras this last week and is coming home today. I cannot even begin to express my excitement over him coming home. I don’t know if it is just maybe to have someone else on my side, or to see the damage or just to help with the discipline. Which, discipline is a whole other story. I still have yet to find a technique that works for her. People tell me over and over, you need to be consistent. Trust me, we are consistent – Byron and I are both disciplinarians and we don’t play. But, she could care less. The one thing I am big on is not having empty threats, when I threaten, I follow through. In fact, I sometimes have people stare at me when I discipline my child and I know what is going through their heads, and I just want to scream at them…you have NO idea. None. Here are the things I try and implement on a daily basis and how she reacts to them. Please, any suggestions or ideas are wanted here.
Time Out – this one is just about the least effective. She will sit in a corner and make it fun. She will sing, and I tell her to stop. So, she hums…well, I tell her to stop. So she moves her hands like dancing, I tell her to stop and she does and then moves her head…do you see a pattern here? The manipulation kills me. Usually, time out ends in a spanking because she is being so disobedient.
Taking Away Privileges – I remember this one being big for me as a child. When you are young, you know the things you enjoy and when you cannot play or have them, it is awful. Well, at least it was for me. Louisa on the other hand – just finds it a way to bring her sass to the mix. For example – I take away her crayons and markers as punishment for something she has done. Do you know what happens then; she crosses her arms and says, “Well, I don’t likes to color anyways.” These are the moments when my toes curl in my shoes and I find my fists clinching and I need to go count to 10. She is 3, why is she so manipulative? I just don’t understand. I could get it if she ran rampant with no rules, but that is not the case here. She has rules, and she is punished. Ugh, it is so frustrating.
Spanking – an oldie, but not necessarily a goodie in our house. I made a decision when I had a child to only use spanking as a last resort. And I do. However, I use it in threats and it seems to be effective, ie. “Louisa if you talk back to me that way again you will get a spanking and you will sit in your bedroom in the corner.” I’d say I only have to spank 1 out of 3 times. Well, one time when I did…she turned to look at me and said, “dat din hurt Mommy.” I mean, what do you do at that point? Honestly, I wanted to spank harder, but that was beside the point at the time. I would only be spanking again to prove myself, and if I did…I would only be stooping to her level and ultimately feel bad about it later. Other times when I spank, one would think a lashing was occurring with the amount of dramatics that follow. In the words of my Grandmom Kay, Oh dear me.
The whole “I am disappointed in you” talk – this one is one I have implemented just recently. I figured if she is going to act like she is older, she may understand this more. After bad behavior, I will sit her down and have this talk in which I almost make her feel guilty. Is this wrong? If so, I guess it doesn’t really matter since it hasn’t seemed to work yet.
I mean, wits end. End of the rope, you name it. Just recently it has been awful, and not just since Byron has been gone. I remember him having a talk with her before he left about listening to Mommy and being on her best behavior, etc. It just seems that nothing goes through to her. I am just so tired, impatient and over it all right now that I just have no tolerance left. I asked myself one night as I lay wide awake in bed if I was setting too high of standards for her as I tend to do so with myself sometimes. But, I don’t really think so. I understand completely that toddlers will test their boundaries and that is just part of life and I get that. What I don’t get is the obvious lack of respect, bull-headedness and sass that comes forth from this sweet little thing. I know I am not the only one out there with a child that can sometimes drive them crazy, but I seriously have no clue what else to do. I get so tired of getting on to her. It is like she sticks her fingers in her ears when I talk to her. I wouldn’t know what to do if I went just one day without having to yell at her, punish her or get on to her about something. It is just wearing me out and making me scared to death to think that come February I will be bringing a second one into the mix.
So, other moms…I am reaching out big time. What do you do? What do you find that works? I know there are other readers out there with sassafras-drama-queens because you comment to me about them, please help me out here.
So, to end this I will give you 2 pictures from the last week. The first is a picture of something I cherish, my child asleep. Nothing better in the world, especially not when she sleeps about as often as a blue moon.
The second makes me smile. My two sweet doggies waiting for handouts of boiled peanuts from my Dad. Don’t worry – Lucy was not dis-obeying her confinement rules, we had her on the leash and she stayed seated in front of the peanuts. :)
Until next time…when I REALLY hope to have funny stories again, but you know…you take the good with the bad.
Oh, and PS – today is my birthday. My birthday usually means 1 of 3 things. Hurricane evacuation, SEC football debut or Labor Day. Today, the Dawgs play. It is gorgeous outside and I hope to get out there and enjoy it. So, happy 29th to me (again) and here’s to a great football season, Go Dawgs!