Thursday, February 4, 2016

My Toddler is turning out to be my greatest Teacher

So for a while now we've been dealing with an unruly, defiant, emotionally confused, easily unraveled little man.  Nathan is around 3 and a half now, and he plays the part of monstrous toddler quite brilliantly.  Bravo little man.  Oh wait!

NO -  Oh GOOD grief I am so tired of the whacky, crazy, unexplainable behavior.  I see this awesome sweet, intelligent and sensitive little boy emerging at times but there are these other, dare-to-keep-them-quiet times where he acts so irrational I think to myself "surely this little kid has lost his f'ing mind"!  Yeah yeah... I know!  You don't have to remind me.  This is what the vast majority of toddlers do.  When you're in the thick of it and it's been going on for months, it feels like it will never end.

Our counselor continues to remind us of Nathan's progress and I am so grateful for her keeping us grounded.  They say our children are our best teachers and I really do believe that now with my whole heart.  Nathan has taught me so much about the kind of person I really am.... which has truthfully been a shameful discovery for me.  I know I am a good Mom, but I want to be a great one.  I see my shortcomings shown to me in a blaze of flashing behavior that he mirrors back to me.  Oh no!  I don't want those things for him.  He has unknowingly shown me and taught me that I have habits and behaviors that I desperately want to... nay... need to change about myself.  I truly had no idea how much of a 360 degree immersive experience having and raising a child would be.  It astounds me how much I have learned about myself, the world, and how my priorties are shifting dramatically.

Just a few things I am working on and changing...and I'm sure there are more but these are the big ones!

  1. Anxiety - This ugly beast!  My anxiety is far better than it's ever been in my adult life.  Why?  Because I don't want Nathan to perpetuate or develop this in himself.  It's wild when you see your child mirroring anxious behaviors that you know you, yourself do.  I am in the process of reevaluating virtually everything I do and say on a daily basis.  For those who have been here.... this is EXHAUSTING!
  2. Complaining -  My health hasn't been the greatest .. ever.  It's not horrible but it's improving and has improved a tremendous amount in recent months.  But I am like a typical man when I get sick.  I whine, I complain.  I never realized just how much I made random comments about "my head hurts" or "whoah It sucks that I feel so bad" ..... until I heard my darling little boy saying those same kinds of things.  UGH.  Not going to lie, I'm a bit worried that I can't get him to pull out of this behavior... even though I have quashed showing much of this kind of stuff around him.  If I truly am sick and sound sick and look sick - that's a different story.  I know that it's important for him to see that it's OK to take breaks and take care of yourself.  BIG difference between the associated behaviors though.
  3. Patience -  I have learned very quickly and very shamefully that I am sorely lacking in this department.  My biggest New Years resolution this year is to develop and foster an ability to be patient in light of ANY circumstance or situation.  This will not be easy.

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