It’s been hovering around 0° for the last week or so. Even colder with the wind chill. Now I’m a hardy Minnesotan (hovered under my blanket currently), so Olivia and I have still been getting out of the house periodically to run errands. Friday, we went out to meet our friends at Target to do a little shopping. It was a big moment because it was the first time I was brave enough to let Olivia walk around in public.
It was pretty successful if you don’t count her running away from me 147 times, forcing me to abandon my cart to chase after her, and her meltdown because I wouldn’t let her chew on the clearance toy. Still, I think we found a new free activity to get us through winter until it warms up again.
It just reminded me how much of a toddler she’s growing into every day. How much she’s growing up. I’ve had to continue to work on my parenting. You know, like utilizing my Mom Voice and setting boundaries and trying not to burst out laughing when I’m trying to discipline her. Yesterday, she kept insisting on walking over to the little shelf in the corner of the kitchen and grabbing the little (non-breakable) decoration I have sitting there to carry around. I went over for the fourth time, said, “No, no, we leave that alone,” and went to take it and she smiled her toothy sneering smile at me and uttered a series of unintelligible babbles and I clamped my mouth shut so I wouldn’t burst out laughing because OMG! She’s hilarious!
(I realize I probably should just remove this entire shelf and take away all temptation, but I’m also trying not to lock up or lay bare every room in the house.)
I suck at parenting, you guys. Ok, I don’t suck. I just need to work on that transition from taking care of a baby to raising a toddler and it’s hard. I wouldn’t say that I’m necessarily insecure as a parent. I’m slowing figuring it all out. But I see other moms my age and they seem so much more mature? No… capable, maybe? Like, they would know what to say when their child asks, “Mama, what is sex?”
(My answer: It’s bad, is what it is. Bad. Yucky!)
The biggest source of stress with me lately is the epic meltdowns she throws when something is taken away. It actually can cause some anxiety in me, to the point where I’m plotting how exactly I can take away the remote from her so I don’t cause All of the Screaming. Sometimes I’m lucky and we can do a trade-off: Here Baby, I’ll take the napkin you found in the garbage and YOU can have this fun teething ring!
Sometimes it works. Mostly it doesn’t.
And when it doesn’t, whew. Watch out. It’s impressive. She has perfected The Tantrum down to a series of very specific stages.
There is the lip pout, followed by the fist clench, followed by the gasp of air and then finally, beautifully, the Howl. If she’s already laying down, she will just lay there and sob. Like, it’s all too much for her to bear and so she just freaking gives up because what is the point of living if you can’t strangle yourself with the laptop cord?
It’s a good thing our activities like ECFE and library Storytime are resuming this week. We need to get back into our routine.
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