I do not remember feeling this frustrated as a parent when Kyan was younger. But man, 3 is my least favorite age yet. CONSTANT "No No No No" from me gets constant "NONONONONONO" from him. He fights me on everything and I SWEAR he is going for World's Most Annoying Toddler. I LOVE Kyan to pieces, but he is making it really hard to like him a lot of days lately.
I have been seeking the parenting advice of a good friend of mine of late, and one of the things she wrote me in an email is that this stage is all about pushing boundaries because that is how they learn. Small children are not purposely trying to get on our nerves or needle us, this is just how they learn. And I am trying to desperately to remember that when Kyan has just licked Gage's face for the TENTH time or is running around screeching despite all my attempts at calm redirection to read or play with another toy or have a snack. Most days at the end of the day, I feel as if I have fought a war and lost. And I find myself asking "Where is the fun in this?"
Now, I know parenting is not all about fun and good times 24/7. Believe me....I am definitely of the mindset you must be a parent (which = disciplinarian, voice of reason, bearer of bad news, etc) before you are a friend to your kids. BUT, I see parents who seem to enjoy raising their offspring 95% of the time and don't constantly want to ram a sharp pencil into their ear or remove their eyes with a spoon because these activities sound more appealing then dealing with their "spirited" children.
So I am making it my mission to find the fun in parenting. I started out on this parenting journey with a lot of joy and hopefulness and, let's face it-expectations. Just because parenthood is not what I thought it would be at the moment doesn't mean it's awful. I just feel like a horrible Mother. SO my mission is to find the joy in this again before my kids start to recall that Mommy just screamed all the time and seemed really angry.
We did pretty well the second half of the summer. I cut way back on playdates and we stayed home a lot more when I realized that trying to get us out of the house and doing lots of activities made me stressed, which made me yell more, which made Kyan act up more. Now with preschool 2 mornings a week, I usually head up to see a friend on a third day, and before I know it, our weeks are crammed full. And Kyan act up more and more.
SO I need to find the fun for both Kyan's and my sakes. He needs my patience, especially when I least have it or want to give it, and I want him to remember childhood fondly, not just a span of several years where he was always in time out. Any suggestions? Yes, I do crafts, etc and try to give Ky individual Mommy time. I am just looking for techniques, if anyone has any ideas or tried and true methods.
Here are a couple recent pics-For Jon's birthday, I made him flannel pajama pants with a monkey print on them, and then made matching pairs for Kyan and Gage because I knew Jon would appreciate that. So here are the guys in their matching pants: