Sunday, July 13


I sat down to write a nice pleasant post about something somewhat boring: schedules. But then I had to deal with putting Alexis to bed* and now I'm in the mood to vent.

Do you ever feel like banging your head against a wall because it has to be more enjoyable and less frustrating than what you are currently doing? That's how I feel after dealing with Alexis most of the time lately. While she is chalk full of wonderful attributes, she's also got some extremely difficult ones. Her main problem is that she is too smart for her own good. That might not make a lot of sense, but if you spend much time with her you'll realize it. She seems to mentally exhaust me everyday before 11 AM, and then I spend the rest of the day hanging on by my fingertips. Not only is she extremely curious and full of the never-ending "why", but she's also very persistent and doesn't know when to say when. You give her an inch and she'll take a mile. And lately she cries at the drop of a hat, which is really wearing on my patience. Right now she's crying possibly harder than I've ever seen, yet I don't want to give in to what she wants. I don't want to teach her that that's the way to get things. So what do I do? Really, I'm asking, what do I do?

I've been trying to be better about taking the kids out to do fun things, just them and me, so that I'm interacting with them more. But it seems like the more we go and do the more she acts out. She's almost acting like spoiled kids do, when they can have everything they don't appreciate anything. Maybe I am spoiling her too much. Maybe even though she is extremely social, too much noise and craziness really does affect her negatively. Maybe I just need to be more inventive with the activities we do at home where it's quiet and familiar. I know there are a lot of great moms that read this, so give me some more ideas of fun things to do at home!

I think I'm just going to have to draw a harder line. With her, no HAS to mean no, I can't give her any wiggle room. Which I hate because I don't like being hard on her all the time, and I don't like having to constantly tell her no. I guess I've got to step up my game and really think harder before I respond to her questions and demands. I need to increase my brain power somehow, maybe I ought to be taking those Omega 3 vitamins my dad gave me...

This child is definitely a blessing in so many ways. She forces me to step outside of my shell, and she definitely makes me work harder than I normally care to, but there's so much of her personality that I don't understand. She is a very complicated puzzle--like a 1000 piece puzzle of a cloudless sky. So wish me luck and give me lots of words of encouragement, because clearly I'm feeling a little defeated right now.

*She's normally very easy to put to bed but occasionally she wants to be impossible.


Ashley said...

just stick with it! i think you're a great mom... i've studied it a lot! you're doing good! hopefully it's just a phase!

Jamie VanBeekum said...

Keri has the same sorts of problems with her girls... I think it might be a girl thing (not that I have any experience in that area, LOL). I too have my challenges with my boys, but different. Just hang in there. It will get better. I'm also assured it will get worse too as the teenage years come on. Just know that pretty much every mom feels your pain!

Kevin said...

Did you ever read Jurassic Park? The velociraptors always checked different parts of the fence, looking for weakness. That's what kids do. They look for weaknesses in us. Some kids look harder than others, I guess. Once they find a weakness they will exploit it over and over again.

What works for one kid may not be what works for another, but consistency is what our kid needs.

The way I see it, kids (and adults) will only do something if they see a benefit in doing it. Take away all benefits for negative acts. For example, my son started hitting himself when he was younger. A parenting website advised parents to basically suck up to the kid and say it made mommy and daddy sad. That made it worse. It gave him ammunition. Instead, I decided to hit him too. "Oh, you like getting hit? Here, let me help you!" Of course, I didn't hit him hard or anything, but his plan backfired. The behavior stopped immediately. It's all a mind game. Never give them the upper hand.

The Shill Spill said...

And I thought it was just Jake!
For some odd reason or another, I thought it would get a tad easier after the 2 and 3 year old stage...or, at least - that's what I heard! But, for some of the many reasons you posted about, this last week or so I have wanted to put him up for sale on an auction block!
Trust me Lis! You are a great mom! I've seen the patience you have with your children! (Much more than I have.) You have the right state of want to help them in every way you can, while teaching them the rights and wrongs of behavior.
As I am somewhat in your case, even though I have a 4 year old boy, and not a almost 4 year old girl, all I have to say is: This too shall pass. Right?

Cindy said...

First of all, I think you are a wonderful mom - I've been so impressed with your patience and how cute you are with your kids. It seems that as we raise our children we have to continually pull up on the reins and be more strict ---- then they improve and we relax a little more. It's a cycle. Remember to praise a lot, be honest with them, when you tease, make sure they know that you are teasing, and love them. It's a stage - she will get better!!!

Merrick said...

Well, since I have no kids, I have no advice for you. But I say keep going with the being a hard mom. I've seen so many kids who have their parents wrapped around their fingers. DON'T DO IT! :)

By the way, if you ever need a break, we're more than happy to babysit!

Anonymous said...

have me come live with you for a week. i just got back from scout camp for a week and i found out i really enjoy telling people "no" for arbitrary reasons and, even better, no reason at all, just to see a look of disappointment, or anger, and respond with laughter and ridicule.