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standard September 14, 2010 5 responses

The meltdowns in our house this week and last have been epic. Sisters are fighting. Little girls are freaking out right and left. And I have to admit that I’ve lost my cool on a few mornings. Even M has raised his voice a few times and the man is usually imperturbable.

I’ve been very focused on helping C get ready for her big transitions – out of daycare and into Kindergarten – that I somewhat forgot that Little L would also be undergoing some serious changes. The child is usually mellow and easy going. She adapts pretty quickly so I’ve never been as concerned about prepping her and watching for odd or delayed reactions from her. She’s like me, pretty easy going and knows how to roll with the punches.

It’s possible that these past two weeks have offered up more punches than she’s used to rolling with.

First, her big sister left daycare. They’ve always been in daycare together. Even when C left to go to preschool, Little L would know that she’d be back after nap time. It’s not that they ever played together at daycare, it’s just that she always knew that her sister was there and now she’s not.

Then I changed our morning routine. For two years now we’ve been taking our sweet time in the morning, getting up and getting ready at a rather mellow pace. Now we have to be up, dressed, fed, hair brushed, and out of the house by 7:45am. I even changed the route we take. Instead of going straight to daycare, we take C to school, drop her off, and then head to daycare.

If that wasn’t enough, Little L started school herself last week. She loves school. It’s the highlight of her week. She’d go every day if she could. And that’s where the problem lies. C gets to go to school every day, Little L only goes Tuesdays and Thursdays. Do you know how hard it is for a 3-year-old to understand that she doesn’t get to go every day? Do you know how much time elapses between Thursday and Tuesday? An eternity. That’s how long. Or so Little L would have you believe.

In the grand scheme of things none of these changes are massive or insurmountable. In the eyes of a 3-year-old they’re pretty big and they’re leading to lots of tantrums and outbursts.

I find myself taking lots of deeeeep breaths when she hides, gets petulant, throws a fit, refuses to eat, sleep, or stop whining. She’s confused and crabby and she’s taking it out on us because we’re her safety zone. I know it. M knows it. And we both know that kid gloves work much better in this case than rising voices.

And yet, I hope you’ll excuse me when I confess that some mornings, when the stress of getting three people out the door in under 45 minutes rather than two hours gets to me, sometimes I snap. Which ads to the angst and slows us down even more, but come on, I’m only human after all.

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5 responses

  • You ARE only human. With being sick and stressed, I’ve been snapping at my family A LOT lately. Oh course, I feel absolutely terrible about it immediately after. But of course, things always seems so simple and achievable when you’re not IN the situation.

    Let’s hope you and I both find our inner zen.

  • We’re in the same boat… getting ready for Kindergarten is a very different experience vs. an afternoon preschool where you had all morning to hang out. Luckily, A is pretty settled now (it’s been a month), and most of her morning tantrums are gone.

    K has only been to preschool with me or with A and me…so it’ll be interesting to see how she handles being dropped off…we start tomorrow, but I’m not leaving her ’til next week, so we’ll see how it goes. Luckily, she knows a lot of people in her class, so hopefully, it’ll be an easy transition for her…hopefully, she’ll continue to be easy-going & not throw the tantrums that I know she’s capable of having…

  • The fact that you care so much to share shows how deeply you care about your children. Get Little L on your side, give her ‘big girl’ responsibilities so she can’t tantrum. Or maybe have C make something special for L to keep with her when she’s at her school so she can know C is with her.

    And, really, the best part is that while you’ll remember this until she’s married and has kids of her own, Little L moves on quickly. Sure it keeps coming back, but not b/c she’s dwelling on it but b/c it’s new all over again to her.

    Don’t be so hard on yourself (says the woman who’s doing the same!). But, do as I say. Not as I do!

  • I remember one morning when Mac just wasn’t moving quickly enough, and I guess I was on his case for every little thing because when he was rinsing his cereal bowl (I think he was 8 or 9), he looked at me and said, “What am I the harbinger of doom?”

    Um, he read a lot of Peanuts books back then, and Linus had said that.

    In other words, he felt my negativity and thought he was to blame.

    And I was cranky, negative and human. Makes me feel like a bad mom even all these years later, even though the Linus quote cracks me up now just like it did then.

  • Ohhh… It’s okay because as moms of today’s generation, we all go through a lot of the same experiences when it comes to the daily doses of raising our kids. I admit, I also snap at my kids whenever my patience is being put into limits. We are just human. What matters most is how much we love our family.:-)

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