Motherhood is hard. Anyone who tells you otherwise is clearly lying through their teeth, or getting loads and loads of help (and there’s nothing wrong with that). One thing that happens again and again is that I seem to get the hang of a stage Colin is going through and then BOOM! Colin moves unto another stage and I’m taken aback and frustrated. When this happens, it takes me a few days to get into the swing of things.
For example, here’s a status update from facebook from when Colin was seven weeks old.
I thought I had it all figured out, when in fact the last two years have been more of a shuffle where I take two steps forward, and one step backwards.
When I remember that Colin is JUST two years old (or 790 days old), my frustrations, most days, just disappear. And so does my exhaustion. I’m of the mindset that Colin won’t always need me to stay in the room while he falls asleep, so why not provide that support while he desires it?
I do love to read up on child behavior and child development. I recently finished reading Your Two-Year-Old: Terrible or Tender by Louise Bates Ames, and I found it super helpful to learn about common stages / traits that two year old children share.
Some gems that I highlighted:
“A second striking characteristic of the Two-and-a-half-year-old is his demand for sameness.”
“This is possibly the worst age of any for making choices. Two-and-a-half vacillates back and forth, and if he finally settles for one of two choices, he is almost bound to choose the other immediately.”
“Whining is one expression of this fatigue. The child not only feels like a baby but wants to act like one, at least part of the time.”
“Many of these seemingly aggressive approaches are not actually aggressive. It is just that children want what they want and, if necessary, hit, push, struggle to get it.” (This would have helped me loads when Colin was bit three times at Nursery back in May).
“This tends to be an aggressive age, and play with children as well as with objects can be quite violent.”
“Distracting and terminating may be two of your very best techniques when your child is Two-and-a-half.”
“If your boy or girl has good potential, and if you provide a reasonably rich and lively environment and give him plenty of love and attention, his mind will take care of itself.” (This makes me feel less guilty about screen time).
I have loads more parenting books to read and on my wish list. Currently, I’m reading Expecting Better: Why the Conventional Pregnancy Wisdom is Wrong and What You Really Need to Know by Emily Oster.