really?

Really? I am just sayin’. Everything you read on the internet is not true…Now that we have that established. I do often head to the internet to search for ideas and hopeful solutions to problems. I recently looked up two things. How to get out of a funk and how to deal with a defiant toddler. The defiant toddler information seemed worthy of a test. So, for the past few days I have been attempting to try out what I had read. At this point I say, “yeah right.”

Parenting advice that usually has to do with “how not to yell at your kids ever again,” and “how to get your children to obey you every time” are hogwash. I say, HOGWASH! I am assuming that those articles and bits of advice are either written by people who have never had children, those who have grown children and have forgotten what it was like, have nannies, or have pretty easy kids. I only have four kids. Each one of them is different-big time. My two youngest include a crier and a push-the-button kid. I am not sure what is harder of those issues. The crying over everything or the yelling and being defiant, never obeying kid. Who, by the way, screams every time you tell her “no.”

Someone recently asked me, with a serious face, if I had tried telling my kids “no” yet. Cue sarcasm.: Um, no. I haven’t. I have never thought about telling them “no.” Wow, how do you do that? Maybe that will solve all my problems.

I don’t indulge my children either. This is their temperament. I have to learn how to communicate with them so they feel like they are communicating with me, without breaking their spirit, killing them, or do psychological damage in some way. Telling them “no” should not hurt them in any way, although they sure make it seem that way. I follow through with rules and with whatever I tell them. At least I believe I do, I will give myself some room for mistakes or changing my mind. I often realize I do make mistakes as a parent. That means I have to cool off, have time outs, and even tell my children sorry because they were trying to do something innocent and I misunderstood.

Parenting is darn hard. Did you get that? It is hard! However, it is so worth it. I hope that I do a good job. I hope they make good choices and are kind people. I hope they forgive me for my mistakes. In the meantime, while I wait for them to grow up, I will keep on keeping on. I will keep trying again and again. I will even search the internet again for other ideas that I can try with my children to learn how I can be a better parent and maybe, just maybe, find the magic language my kid needs to hear.

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Learning

I often feel like I hav much to learn as a parent. Every day seems to come with failed experiments. Ones in which I thought would work and yet they did not go as planned. Often though, my days still have successes. That is just a part of life. Learning and growing are a part of it.

I have been a little missing in action on this here blog thing of mine. There have been many learning moments in the last several weeks. Some days I feel as though I am succeeding and some days I go to bed wondering how I am going to make it through another day. We are all alive though.

Successful days for me include being able to keep on top of my son. Last week I was able to finally pack away all of the winter coats, gloves and boots. It felt so good. In its place were two containers that held shoes. I knew I was in trouble when my son almost immediately dumped them out so he could place the containers on the table. Really?! How could I have possibly expected my son, who likes to dump, not to dump out the shoes? Was I really expected order? I gave up! Okay, not really. I resolved to find a solution.

Several stores later I ended up at Shopko looking at their furniture. I  stopped at my favorite piece that was on sale. It looked so nice, but I was too poor.  I could not justify the expense when I could purchase another item slightly cheaper, although not as easy on the eyes.

Several minutes later I was home going through a box of furniture pieces. My kids were on top of it, and me, the whole time. They were excited thinking there was a new play toy for them. I was excited to have found a solution to my problem.

Everything went well until the second to last step. Normally I pay close attention to the directions and what side I am using but in the process of beginning the step and getting the kids out of my way I didn’t realize my mistake. Forty tiny little annoying nails later and I realized I had nailed the back onto the front. As gracefully as I could I removed those nails, and the back remained in one piece, albeit a little mangled. Eventually it was done. The doors covered up my the holes left over from my mistake. I felt accomplished. One more problem solved, and many more will come as the days go on.

Every day will bring challenges to each parent. There will be times we succeed and times we fail, and each day we hopefully get another chance to try again.