Monday, May 26, 2008

The behavior, not the boy

I really haven't liked my son much the last few days. His behavior that is, not Max himself. I feel like I have spent the whole weekend saying....please stop hitting me, that hurts, don't jump on me, if your going to act like that go away from me, leave Shadow alone, that's hurting her, no don't touch her, if you do that one more time your going to time out in your room, etc. and so on. I'm sure some of it is the age and testing, testing, testing. Probably some of it is just because he is a boy. Some of it is from being tired since he isn't napping; he's falling asleep late; he's waking up several time at night; and he's waking up early.

And, part of it is the change. Max's nanny came over the weekend with her husband and brother and took the queen bed and two dressers in my spare room so I can begin to get the twins room set up. While here, they helped me set back up the crib. Max had a huge fit when the bed started going out saying he wanted it and has asked where it is and says he wants it back several times a day since. He has wanted to nap in the crib the last two days. Although he hasn't actually napped in it, he did play in it and the room during nap time giving me a bit of a break. Last night he fell asleep in the crib and woke up in the middle of the night crying (and sopping wet...they have been out of the only overnight diapers that work for Max lately...Noemi and I have gone to 6 - 7 stores and all of them were out so part of the night waking is because he is soaked through and needs to be changed as well as the bedding...thank goodness I found a store that had some in stock today) for some milk and decided he wanted to go back to his big bed. Even before this weekend, he has been pretending to be a baby a lot. Last week, he was crawling all over the house saying he's a baby. One morning he crawled down the driveway to Noemi's car. He'll cry and say he is a baby. He found a baby bottle that had been filled with candy as a party favor for my shower for him and wanted to drink out of it saying he's a baby. I've gone with the flow figuring he's internalizing and working this all out as best he can and role playing as he needs.

Still this out right deliberately mean behavior is just so draining. It's not as if you can just let it go, but it's hard to spend almost every waking moment (and since he hasn't been sleeping well/much there has been a lot of awake time) calling him on it and correcting him all just feels so negative. It's like he wanted to be physically right on top of me and touching me all weekend, which really would have been fine except for the hitting, hair pulling, jumping on, over, and around me, kicking and other physically inappropriate behavior. Now, most if it really wasn't all that hard or hurtful, but way was it acceptable in any way shape or form. I'm not talking about accidental stuff, I'm talking deliberate acts to annoy and hurt. I'm not talking about the time he was doing something and accidentally bumped his forehead into my eyebrow causing me to say "oww". I'm talking about how just after he told me sorry and kissed it to make it better, he did it again on purpose and then told me to "cry momma". It's almost amazing he was able to keep this up for so many hours over so many days. It's hard to imagine he was getting what he was looking for out of the interaction and I'm not sure how else I could have and should have responded to nip it in the butt.

To defuse the situation, I made sure we got out more than I really wanted to change the focus. This behavior, at least so far, has been reserved for home. He was actually really good when out and about (and maybe he wanted more away from home time, but physically, I just can't do an all day outing right now...I just can't). I was especially pleased with his behavior in church Sunday morning. It was the first week of no Sunday school and I was really dreading it because he usually is all over the cry room and it is so draining, but really...he sat next to me for minutes at a time, stood at the window watching and paying attention for much of the service, danced when there was music and was overall well behaved and charming. Those times away as tiring for me as they are physically right now saved the weekend from being just one big negative moment after another and reminded me that really, I do like my's just his behavior at home that I'm not so fond.

I can't tell you how happy I was that Max was so well behaved during tonights bedtime routine and he was so tired he fell asleep before I even left his room. I really can't remember that ever happening. And, as his eye lids were getting heavier and heavier and he just couldn't keep them open anymore and as he drifted to sleep before my very eyes, he just looked like an angel so pure and innocent. Ah, sleep, blessed sleep.

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