The bad news is that the boys FIGHT ABOUT EVERYTHING!!! People say it’s normal. I don’t know. I don’t have anything to compare it to. But it’s driving me insane. When they’re not fighting they’re complaining to me about each other. Ugh! My co-worker says she tells her two teenagers to either “figure it out or move out.” Am I really going to have to deal with this until they are teenagers?!?!
The bad news is that when they get mad their reactions are bigger and more dangerous than when they were tots. Some new behaviours have emerged and I need to find a way to redirect that negative energy. It’s not safe.
The bad news is that Jay has a real attitude problem. I know he knows better. He’s choosing to be rude. He hates to not get his own way and he hates to be kept waiting. Well, I never!
The bad news is that Ace is struggling to listen and follow instructions and control his talking.
*I took a break and came back to this post many hours later. I spent that time contemplating whether or not to publish some specific details that I had written above. Am I violating my boys by giving so much info? But it’s my story to tell too. I chose to hit delete. I think I’ve shared enough to make my point.*
And now, many hours later, I’m ready to write about the good news.
The good news is that it’s not always bad. Not by a long shot. My boys play together a lot. They want to be together. They share with each other. Each one cares about when the other is hurt. One looks up to the other and the other feels pride in being looked up to. Just yesterday Jay bumped his foot on the bed and Ace put down his toy to attach a(n unecessary) band aid to his brothers foot. Jay said it made his foot “all better“.
Jay has words to tell me when he’s mad. For so long he didn’t and that’s all I could think about. I wondered if I’d ever know what his voice sounded like. Now I and all our neighbours know. I’ll take it. He lets me know when he needs quiet time and when he’s hot or thirsty. He asks to go home when he’s had enough of being out. I can reason with him … How about we do this and then you can have that? Let Ace get a turn and then it will be your turn. He asks me for hugs and he puts in requests for us to “watch television together“.
He is still figuring it all out; the business of how to use this words power he has. He needs to tone it way down with the attitude and with the outright rudeness and he needs to learn how to wait … but he can tell me exactly what he wants to eat (now-a-days it’s usually pizza) and he can tell me when he’s tired or scared and he can tattle on his brother. He can argue with anyone who dare have an opinion that’s different from his. He lies to avoid getting in trouble and to spare himself from having to do chores. It’s not good. But words are coming out of his mouth and that is very VERY good!!!
My Ace. He’s so sweet. He has his own struggles and I try not to lose sight of that. I try to have realistic expectations but I have really high expectations of him because I know he is capable. He’s smart and funny and creative. Much more creative than I ever was or will be. He gives the best cuddles and he loves to be loved up on. Even though he does need to work on understanding other peoples tolerance levels, he loves to play and have fun and be happy and he wants to share that joy. It’s a good thing. He has his good days and his bad. Don’t we all. He’s so much a little kid still. Then he does something so unexpectedly grown up that it makes my head spin. When did he get so big I wonder? He’s at once very aware of what’s going on and clueless about what’s going on around him. He makes me want to be a better, more cheerful Mom and person. He deserves that. He gets so excited about things big and small and it’s infectious. I love it!
The other day we had one of the roughest mornings we’ve had in a very long time. I broke down. I was late for work because I was crying in my car. Later in the evening when I went to pick the boys up, the 1st thing that Jay said to me was “I happy now.” A clear indication that he had not forgotten what the morning had been like. He doesn’t like it when things don’t go his way. He knows when things are out of control and I do think he’s trying to get a handle on it. He will go lay down and cover himself with a blanket and try to calm down. I leave him be when he does that. Occasionally I will check on him and ask if he’s ready to come out. Most of the time he will say “No, not yet.” Sometimes he will tell me exactly how much more time he needs. “Give me 10 minutes ok?” When it’s out of his system and he’s ready to move on he will actually say “I fix it. I happy” and move on with his day. This is HUGE!!! The self-advocacy is amazing to watch.
I didn’t know where I was going with this when I began to write. I just needed to vent. But what’s left on my mind after all this typing is that even though the other morning was bad, this morning was superb and the really good news is that no matter what bad is happening, something good is around the corner. We take backward steps here and there but my boys really are doing a great job of figuring themselves out and figuring out how to get what they need to be happy in an appropriate way.