we are not alone

3 10 2009

Our family enjoyed a wonderful evening visiting friends for dinner.  Our hosts have two daughters, aged 3 and 5; and the other couple invited have two boys, aged 4 and 6…. so in their midst, Paul & I were the “baby” parents with C1 & C2.  First of all, I want to give props to our host who cooked an amazing Italian feast a la David Rocco – not bad for a Sri Lankan guy!

Invariably, the dinner conversation turns to comparisons and contrasts of the children, both inter- (between families) and intra- (within families).  It’s no secret that this has been a terrifically trying and troublesome year with a certain two-year-old boy.  I think that Paul and I often feel alienated in our experience of having a “busy boy”, even though subconsciously we are aware that we are more the norm than the exception.  I will be the first to tell you that I hate the comparisons, every since attending my very first mom’s group – but, at this point, it’s so reassuring to hear that other families play “musical beds” in the middle of the night; other toddlers actually eat LESS than C1 (how is that possible); other boys will take off in a crowded place if not on a tight “leash” (i.e. in the stroller); and toilet training has lasted longer than a month and continues to be a challenge for boys (and girls) who are older than C1.   Ahhhhh…. I just feel like the air cleared a little bit!

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3 responses

5 10 2009
Vanessa

Oh Dee,
While I can’t say I feel your pain exactly, the comparison game is a dangerous one that I’ve found myself in from time to time. Please know that even though some of us aren’t in your exact situation, we don’t judge. Those who are parents (and not naive enough to think that they have all the answers) will understand when they see a toddler throwing a fit, taking off on Mom or Dad, or flat out disobeying with a grumpy attitude.
Ah the life of a parent.
It’s good to have friends in your life who sympathize and understand. I’m glad you have that. 🙂

8 10 2009
LRinTO

“Musical beds” in the middle of the night – absolutely, that’s what all those beds are FOR! Can’t remember exactly when we stopped playing – but it will pass.

“Other toddlers actually eat LESS than Chase (how is that possible?)” – can you believe, Sophie wouldn’t eat carrots (what kid doesn’t like carrots?), apples or oranges – the only vegetable she’d eat was celery (?????). When she started JK, I resorted to outright bribery – eat three bites of food X and get reward Y; it worked. She’s still on the picky side, but extremely healthy (you’ve seen her, right?) and her repertoire has considerably expanded! And yes, now she eats carrots!

“take off in a crowded place” – Sophie LOVED big box stores, especially Staples and Home Depot, because she could RUN up and down those wide aisles. As soon as we set foot in the store, off she’d go. In our family’s division of labour, it was Phil’s job to chase after her and keep her in sight, while I did the shopping; when he had to shop (I’m only good for so much at Home Depot), we’d plunk her in the cart and I’d ride her around. Gosh, I haven’t thought about that for so long – thanks for the memories.

toilet training – Sophie wasn’t trained till she was 3 1/2 – but then it was a breeze. I let her run around the house and yard with a bare bum (it was summer) – somehow, having nothing diaper-ish on helped her think “potty”. We went on a lengthy car trip that summer, diaper-free in the daytime – there were a fair number of false alarm pit stops, but no accidents.

You are doing an amazing job mothering a toddler and preschooler! And Chase sounds completely normal for his age and stage. Honestly, I promise you, he will grow out of all these challenging behaviours. xxxooo

8 10 2009
Stephanie

Hey Deirdre

You are not alone in parenting a busy three year old. It has also been a challenging year for us with our young Mason. He is (finally) potty trained, but is still having accidents.

He NEVER STOPS. I mean NEVER. He starts going the instant he is awake and doesn’t stop until the literal instant that he falls asleep. It is exhausting. He is obstinate and mouthy and contrary on the best of days, and on the worst he can be downright impossible. I agree that it can feel alienating when other children of the same age around you are better behaved, listen better and are properly potty trained.

And don’t even get me started on eating. Mason has a set menu of which he will partake. If it is a carb, he is there. Chicken nuggets, fries, peanut butter sandiwiches, pasta, and cereal. Fruits? Veggies? Yeah, right. We have to hide them in smoothies, but at least he gets them.

Don’t feel alone. You are most certainly not.

kisses
steph

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