Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Being a mom

Hmmm...I'm beginning to question my "position" as a mother. I am in the midst of joining a moms club out here and one of the questions in the getting to know you section is - What do you love most about being a mom? it bad that I don't really have a good answer for that? There's really nothing great about being a mom, is there? Yeah, sure you get to see your kid grow up. She does funny things and is quite a joyful person to be around. But truthfully, it's a whole heck of a lot of HARD WORK to be a mom. I know I preach this a lot but I think the "mom" experience is totally different between a stay at home mom and a working mom and I clearly belong in the latter group. I am not hard-wired to hang out with my kid all day long. I'm just not. Like I mentioned before, I was watching two kids for four days I nearly died. That's just FOUR days!! What about those moms that have 8 kids? No thank you. No thank you very much...
I also think this NVC thing is driving me bananas. It's so difficult to wrap my mind around letting D express her feelings to give her the confidence to make decisions in the future, etc., etc.
Alternative forms of communication rather than "ordering her around". But life is so much easier when you can just order them around and tell them what to and what not to do. Who cares about her confidence in the future? I found mine somewhere in my 30's....

Friday, August 26, 2011

Building confidence

How does one address a child who is screaming over the fact that her cousin wants to take a nap? Actually, if anyone tries to close their eyes for a bit of downtime while in D's presence, she will get upset and will scream. Not a blood curdling scream but just a short scream to scare you out of sleep.
It all started when she was really young - a baby and she screamed when her grandfather shut his eyes. We thought it was funny at the time so we let her continue and it became a, not so funny.
And I'm trying not to be the mother who just screams at her kid and tells her to not do that. I'm trying to communicate with her and ask her why is she screaming? Why can't H sleep? D's response - Because I don't want her to. Well, I just don't want her to. How does one work with this??
So today I said, "Well, D if H closes her eyes, is it hurting you?" D: "No." Me: "Okay, then we should let her close her eyes. Is that okay with you?" D: "Yes."
Did it work? Not sure...
Later D asks, "What is H doing?" My response, "Don't concern yourself with what H is doing, please. You just worry about yourself."
Silence from D. That was good enough for me. Eventually, she turned her head, her eyes got droopy and she fell into slumber...which was what I was looking for from the beginning of the car ride. Exasperating, no?

Now it's my turn and eh, not so fun...

I have been watching my niece, H and D these past couple of days. H goes back to her mama this Saturday. These girls are making me want to pull my hair out!! I'm pretty sure that when they are over at my sister's, she doesn't have this problem because H shares all her toys with D. She lets D use everything and seems happy to do so because she is almost seven so she understands the art of sharing. D, on the other hand, is only 2.5 and while she has made great strides in understanding possession and not being so possessive of toys that we find out at school or at playgrounds, she is very possessive of her toys in her house. So...that makes for some very unpleasant encounters. And I don't want to always defer to H to be "the bigger/older sister" and understand. That's not very fair so I try to be reasonable for each situation.
I'm not gonna lie. The first couple of mornings involved a lot of D and then on my part. Just so sick and tired of H trying to take something just to look at it or whatever and D screaming at the top of her lungs because she doesn't want H touching anything of hers. Ruuuuddde.
And since I am now trying very hard to understand the art of non-violent communication and communication that builds confidence in a young child, it is so very hard for me to decipher what is right and what is wrong when it comes to communicating with these two girls. Needless to say, I have been EXHAUSTED at the end of each day.
Another thing is I know H does things that she knows will irritate D. While it's not really hurting D, it does cause D to scream and then H lies that she didn't do anything. How does one deal with THAT?? Case in point, the other morning, D was walking around with her helium doggie, loving on it, etc. She didn't want H to touch Nashuan (the dog's name). I turn my head, go into the kitchen for something and then I hear D screaming and then crying. I run over there to see what is going on.
Me: What happened, D? Why are you crying?
D: H stepped on Nashuan!! (clearly you can see why this would be a upsetting to a 2 year old)
H: No, I did not. I mean, I did but it's cuz I didn't see it.
Hello, people. The dog is RIGHT THERE. There is no way she didn't see it!
I mean, my response was just that. "Come on H. There's no way you could've not seen the dog."
I felt terrible saying that, but it's true!!
Anyway, suffice it to say I am at my wit's end with this non violent communication thing. It hurts my head...

Monday, August 22, 2011


Yeay! D had her first sleepover yesterday at her cousin, H's house. D was so excited about it and kept asking about it since last Friday! She just loves her cousin, H!
So, here comes the time when my sister and the two girls are leaving the house and they are in the car. G and I are in the driveway waving good bye and G, of course, is asking, "Is she going to be okaaay?" OF COURSE SHE'S GONNA BE OKAY! And my sister, A rolls down the window for the girls to wave bye-bye and D yells out the window, "Mama! Go inside!"
Oh, okay. Well there you have it. I guess she's fine. :o)
After she is put to bed, A did call me to give me an update. Yes, D is asleep right now. No, she did not just go happily into her crib. She did start to cry a little. Not wailing but just sad asking where Mama is. She said, "But it's night time. Where's mama?" Awwww...truly she's never really been put to bed without me except for maybe two other times in her young life.
But A held her and talked to her. Asked her if she was afraid and explained that she didn't have to be afraid. That auntie, uncle and H were all there for her. A even had H crawl into bed and pretend to sleep. That seemed to soothe D a little. A was able to put her in her crib and shut the door. Then I guess D cried again but A gave it five minutes before she would go in again and sure enough right about 5 minutes, silence. D had fallen asleep!
Now, given this, the morning wake up could've gone two ways - D could wake up crying and wanting to see me or she could wake up and just be excited to see H. Luckily, it was the latter.
Success! Maybe we should do this more often so she doesn't forget how fun it is to have a sleepover. :oD

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Aaannd Daddy saves the day

So, D spent all day yesterday asking for blueberry pie. Random since she's never had it before, but since she requested, I thought I'd oblige. I bought blueberries and told her I would make her blueberry tarts (since I had just bought a new mini tart pan).
This morning I woke up bright and early to make the tarts. I knew I wouldn't have any time later in the day and I wanted her to be able to bring them to school and share with her friends.
She woke up during the process and wanted to help. I let her help until I was cutting the dough with a cookie cutter because obviously she wouldn't have the dexterity to pull it off. And because she didn't have a suitable task, she got bored and would poke and prod the crust dough that I had already placed in the tiny tart holders. Aaargh! She was driving me mad.
I finally told her to get off her step stool and do something else! That made her cry and Daddy came running to the rescue.
He asked me for some leftover dough, grabbed her her own board and told her she could play with the play dough. Ahhh...peace. Thanks, Dad!

Monday, August 15, 2011

Does D like her new school?

Well...I think she might. Anytime she hears anyone mention the word "school" she says, "My school is Riviera playschool"
And last night she is belting at the top of her lungs the good bye song that they sing to every kid as they exit - "Good bye, name, Good bye, name...Good bye name, We're glad you came to play"
So she's belting just the last two lines filling in the names of all her friends at school.
Super cute.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Talking to a 2 year old

I think we keep forgetting that D is only 2.5 years old. I mean, truly, who can tell what a toddler understands and what she doesn't? But, lately D's impatience has been driving me bonkers (and apparently her dad too). Case in point, we are on our way to the airport today to pick up D's grandparents. We have been super excited and have been saying to D, "Your grandparents are coming today! We are going to pick them up at the airport.." etc.
So, we are driving toward the airport and D keeps saying, "I want to go to the airport!!"
So I reply, "D! That is where we are going but you can't just say something and have it manifest right then and there. It takes time to drive to the airport! You need to learn some patience!"
I mean, this girl is always yapping at me about the stuff she wants and she keeps repeating herself even as I am trying to get it for her and prepare it for her and it drives me batty!
Then she asks, "Daddy, where are we going?" And Daddy, who is also exasperated replies, "Where did I say we are going, D? We are going to the airport to pick up yie-yie and nai-nai. You need to have better memory retention, D!"
Hahaha!! That last statement cracked me up!! She's 2 years old! And we are asking her to have better memory retention! HAHAHAH!!
But, in all seriousness...these are some trying times. I mean...GIRLS! Let me tell you (from a young age) you all must learn some serious patience if you EVER are thinking about having children. It takes the patience of saints to manage this job of parenting. Truly...OR you can always just run back to work and hire a sitter/nanny. Yes, that is the best of both worlds. You can semi parent (on weekends only) and leave the nitty gritty to someone else during the week. You get to wake up with the darling angels. Maybe feed breakfast and then happily hand that little angel over to someone else to deal with while you go to work. Then you come home, feed the baby dinner and then off to bed. All the while, all smiles because you didn't have to spend your entire day listening to the same songs being requested, the same questions being asked, whining, questioning, demanding...OH hey, I just described the happy life of a father. That's exactly what they do...

Tuesday, August 9, 2011


Ohhhh...snoooore....this philosophy bit is driving me crazy. Waldorf, Montessori, Reggio...etc. etc. an amalgam of all, parts pulled from some. Uggh. I'm pretty sure our parents did not fret so much over our schooling.
Right now I have D enrolled in a "nature" based preschool. Truthfully, what it looks like to me is a glorified day care. There are three "teachers" but are they really teaching? Or are they just babysitting? I guess just their mere presence and interaction allows for some sort of teaching. What they DO do, however, is engage in non-violent communication. And isn't it nice that they have just a couple rambunctious boys that engage in some random acts of violence so these teachers can display their talents.
Yeah, one of the boys walked up to another boy one day and started pushing his head into the side of the sandbox. Then ran away, came back and push this poor boy over. Excuuuse me, but that is just not acceptable. Oh, the teachers tried to get said bully over to "talk things through"...yeah..I don't know how effective they were. Anyhow, the way I try to deflect this bullying tendency (since D won't let me leave her site so I have to sit around with her all morning) is to laugh off any attempts at bullyism. For instance, I saw one of those boys coming over to D and kind of staring her down, pushing his body into her. I just said very sing-songy - "C, what are you doing over there? Are you staring D down?" And laughing. Then he laughed and D laughed so she wasn't intimidated. And today, another boy kept coming over roaring so I said, "What are you?" He replied, "A Bear!" So I said to D, "Then, D, you are a tree. Bears don't attack trees..." I had her put her arms up like a tree. The boy says, "well, they climb trees..." I replied, "yes, but this tree looks too small to climb. She must be a bush."
And that was the end of that game!
Anyhoooo...although I feel like D probably prefers a more structured environment (or maybe that's just me). At the very least I feel like she gravitates towards a more structured environment I think I'm going to stick to this "free play", naturistic environment to help her step out of her box. Plus, G and I also wonder if we may be doing D a disservice if we were to pull her out of this school now and put her into another one. Very confusing so we'll stick with this for a year. Then we'll see.
Tiring. Very tiring.