Okay so that’s not as rude as it sounds. After giving up on the potty training after my last post on the subject and carrying on as normal with nappies my son surprised me last week by suddenly getting on board with potty training. From nowhere it seems. A poo one night (which fascinated him no end) and he was off. I’d love to be able to say that all that reading about encouraging them, tricks to get them to do it and sticker charts worked but it had absolutely nothing to do with it. HE set the pace. It was nothing whatsoever to do with me.
And for all the people that are right when they say they’ll do it in their own time I give them a big hug and finally believe them. We’ve been dry for nearly a week with only one accident and he’s gone to nursery this morning wearing pants! And with several changes of clothes. It makes me sad though. He’s growing up so fast, before long he’ll be learning to drive and drinking pints of lager. Slight exaggeration. But that’s the last bit of baby behaviour gone.
It has taught me that sometimes as a parent you don’t know best, that sometimes your little boy has a better idea of what should happen than you do. I hope those times are few and far between!!
Actually I don’t mean that…. at all but I met a parent this morning who is the perfect parent with the perfect child, and didn’t they like to snidely say it. So after a 1.5 hour battle over breakfast (which neither of us won), getting dressed, brushing teeth, one bite mark to my hand, a whole range of shouty hitting motions at anything that didn’t move and a lot of screaming and kicking (amazingly not from me) I finally got him to nursery. So there I am saying to the staff member that he hasn’t eaten much, did drink his milk, but if he complains of being hungry there are snacks in his bag.
Enter the perfect parent. A male. Nicely dressed for work, dropping off his little girl. Lovely. He had to comment.
“I blame the parents” to which he got a glance before I carried on talking to the nursery worker, I wasn’t entirely sure he was talking to me even though there was no-one else there.
“A child only has a tantrum because of the parents, and what parent wouldn’t make sure they had a good breakfast?” Are you kidding me?
To which point he carried on in a baby talk voice to his daughter “you wouldn’t come out without breakfast would you sweetheart?”…..
Now I’m not one to get upset at other people’s opinions of me or my parenting but this morning that was the final straw. I’m sure all of us at one time have had enough of the tantrums, and wonder what the hell we did to our kids to make them hate us so much. But all of a sudden they grow out of it a bit and you realise it is not really your fault, it’s just one of those things. What gets me is that other parents, who have obviously lived through it, know what it’s like, try to pretend that it is only happening to you, not them or their perfect children. I HATE that. Be honest! It won’t kill you. It won’t make anyone think you are less of a parent if your kid screams blue murder for nothing more than it can. In fact it’s quite nice when someone says ‘oh god my son does that too’. It’s like going round a supermarket where the elderly and childless glare at you, and the other mums give you a mental hug as if to say I know how you feel that was us in aisle 11. And if you can’t be honest, keep your unwanted and egotistical opinions to yourself.
Next nursery morning I’m doing the haka after getting out of bed…. that should sort him out 😀
It occured to me the other day watching my little boy shout ‘no’ for the 30th time that day…. who taught him that word? Me. With ‘no’ to things he’s not supposed to do from a young age. I also seem to have unwittingly taught him ‘don’t that’s rude’, ‘don’t be naughty’ and ‘you do it’. It’s a bit of a new one on me. Answering back. It’s like suddenly my sweet little boy is a sulky teenager. The naughty chair has become a delaying tactic at bedtime – if I do this, and get a warning, then next time you’ll take me back downstairs for a bit longer. Now I know I never taught him that and even with post-baby brain I caught onto that pretty quickly.
The one thing I love about parenting is seeing the element of competition between parents, and it’s not just in your community, it happens in families too, especially those who aren’t used to sharing with other children apart from their own. Whose child is the best behaved? Whose child gets the most attention from grandparents? Who chooses the best name? Whose potty trains first? Who eats first? Who drinks the best formula? If you work are you neglecting your home life? If you don’t work are they getting enough education? All of a sudden every thing you do with your child is taken out of context especially if you do it differently – you think you’re better. A night in the pub with ‘the mums’ and this story plays out for every single one in some form or another. I know for a fact that some of the things I have done as a mum have been used against me. Is that my problem? Or someone else’s self-esteem problem?
He’ll spend half his life battling against negative people and their opinions. It just seems so wrong that the battle starts out so young. Let’s be honest with ourselves all children follow a similar pathway – where they are right all the time, and everyone else is wrong. The toddlers grow out of it, it’s a pity some of the parents don’t.
I’ve been amazed recently at the pace at which my 17 month old son has been developing. It’s as though overnight this little baby was magically transformed into a little boy. All his puppy fat has gone, he’s talking (well in his own language), running and showing his own personality in ways I’d rather he wouldn’t.
His favourite new game is lets do what mum says no to.. And it’s nearly always naughty; walking on the fireplace, terrorising the cockatiel, hitting the tv. It’s not like I ignore him – when I play games with him, 5 minutes and he’s fed up and on to the next thing. But when he’s decided he wants to hit the tv he spends half an hour going over to it, being told ‘no’, being carried away, going over to it, being told ‘no’, being carried away, going over to it….
I don’t think unless you have children you can ever know how mentally exhausting it is and just once wish the telepathic ‘not again’ would get through. I’m sure he’s laughing at me most days!
Tomorrow I’m going to try ignoring it, once I’ve strapped the tv down tonight he he.