Friday, March 7, 2008
I have been having some trouble with Andrew this week. He has been irritable and bossy and just a little hard to be around. So in an effort to look on the brighter side, I am offering some stories as mommy therapy.
1. One day we were riding the subway and Andrew was reading off the letters and numbers he was seeing. He spotted one advertisement with especially bright letters. "C!" "O!" "N!". I turn to Dave. "what is he spelling?" Dave replies, "condom." And sure enough Andrew was fascinated by the safe sex advertisement. But honestly, who isn't?
2. Andrew's new trick is to demand things. He runs into the kitchen and yells to me "Open the fridge and cook!" How frustrating for him when I don't cook and just laugh at his, um, good joke.
3. Yesterday he opened the door to the china cabinet. He ran to get me and dragged me over to the cabinet. He pointed to the open door and said, "Andrew in there!" This was a tough call. Should I let him get into the china cabinet? Sometimes parenting is so vague.
4. Andrew often overwhelms other kids. What adults find funny, kids have a hard time making sense of and he hasn't learned the difference yet. At playgroup he was trying to engage a little girl. He ran up to her and started laughing. He used his best maniacal laugh to charm her. The girl looked at her mother frightened. "It's okay!" said her mom. "Just be scary back!"
I remember telling a friend when I was pregnant with Andrew that I felt good about handling a newborn and a baby. What I was worried about was 18 months until about 3-4. We are in the full swing of the 2's and some days I love it and some days I want to hide. But it really isn't as bad as I thought it would be. Well, not usually.
So much of his little person is emerging right now. The good, the bad and the ugly. And I like seeing that. We are often surprised by what he knows and well, by what he doesn't know. How is it that he can spot abstract letters and numbers everywhere he goes? A paper curled up the right way is a 'C'. If you hold the two ends up of the hose of the vacuum it is a 'u'. He arranges his legos into "l's" and train tracks into the number 6. But ask him to play with a little girl and he doesn't do so well. Ask him what a cow says and he would rather tell you about his firetruck.
It's easy to see what he does well and bask in moments of "we must be such good parents". It's hard to see him not understand how to engage socially and know what to think. I do blame myself. Of course, I mean, I am his mother. But, that isn't very helpful. Trying to step back, see where he needs growth and figure out how to get him there without taking it too personally is tough. But ideal.
It's hard to parent. Especially with your eyes open.
I just hope I am.
Posted by Dave at 1:22 PM