Saturday, August 8, 2009

Trials and Errors of Parenting

This week has been rough. Let's face it, most weeks are rough, haha.

If I suck this much at parenthood now, imagine how suck-tacular I'll be at it in 10 years.

I've been blessed with one of those "strong-willed" children. If you don't have a strong-willed child I'm sure you're throwing on your judging hat right now and getting ready to spout the usual rhetoric about disclipline and consistency. Cause obviously, it must be lacking right?

My answer to that is HA HA HA. Hahahahahahahahaha. I hope your next one is just like mine.

The word stubborn doesn't even fully describe Hayden's personality. By the way, I threw in a pic of Corbin because Hayden's in a phase where he doesn't want his picture taken. Most of my pics these days are of Hayden's back while he runs away.

Just about every parenting advice or philosophy flunks on Hayden. He is a unique child.

For example, we'd been increasingly concerned over how picky Hayden was becoming over food. His dinners often go picked through with only the bread, fruit or cheese eaten. He would only try new foods through force. So I applied the old "Keep serving it until he eats it." So when he didn't eat it at lunch, we served it for dinner, etc. Yeah, he would rather STARVE himself than give in. He got so hungry he woke up early talking about his belly and then still wouldn't eat. When he did finally eat it (through force/coercion) he threw it up. His stomach couldn't handle any heavy foods. So that TOTALLY backfired. He spent the rest of the day eating whatever he wanted - puffs, crackers, bread - all his favorites

Last month we attempted to put the boys in the same room together. Hayden thought it was entertaining to put every toy in the room into Corbin's crib. Including dangerous things like pillows and blankets. He scolded him very seriously about this, but he continued to do it every night from that point on. We went three weeks and still he was doing it every morning. We have now moved Corbin back out of the room.

Don't get me wrong, Hayden is a sweet and extremely loving child. But if he gets something in his mind - no amount of chastisement is going to change it. What I've heard from others is that you have to find their "button" - something they love that is punishment to take away. With Hayden's current communication level this isn't something I can utilize fully right now. Explaining consequences of a more abstract level doesn't click with him. Hopefully, as his speech catches up I'll be able to use some of those techniques. But as of right now - my hair is all pulled out...I hope I make it through this stage.

My new attack plan is to establish a firmer routine, since Hayden responds to routines well. It will also help him with transitions if he knows what to expect each day. With Mark being home right now job hunting, this has been hard - every day seems to be different. But I'll figure it out.


Ebit said...

Hang in there, Melissa. I have no helpful advice or stories, only sympathy. Please know that you are a wonderful mother... don't doubt that.

Aunt Becky said...

Oh, sister, I understand entirely. Oh, boy, do I. And I'd never judge you.

Having gone through 2 with eating issues, the best advice I can give you is to not worry about it too much. I don't mean like that nasty dismissive "don't worry about it" thing, but like, don't beat yourself up about it.

This is how I survived 8 years of it.

(also: Carnation Instant Breakfast is a Godsend)

Just Me said...

Thanks for the love. Need to try out the Carnation stuff - too bad they don't have Carnation Instant Lunch and Dinner cause then I'd really be in business.

Time to invent a type of broccoli that tastes like goldfish...why haven't they thought of this yet? Somehow they can make cheese spray out of a can and shape chicken like dinosaurs but haven't mastered the broccoli goldfish??? Hmph.

Robyn said...

If it's any comfort with the food issue, my doctor is also an advocate of the "don't worry about it" approach.

Also, just a thought, but I wonder if Hayden would like one of Evan's favorites: homemade chicken pot pie. Evan doesn't like to eat meat or vegetables, but when mixed with pie crust and a nice creamy broth, he loves it. Evan's not crazy picky, so it might not work for Hayden, but thought I'd suggest it in case it might help. Unfortunately, my recipe isn't even remotely low-fat.