All done!

We’re just back from a vacation at the beach.  RR is taking 13 months much harder than I expected.  All of a sudden our tiny little baby is offering up glimpses of raving toddler-dom. No mama, I do not want breakfast.  I do not want to get in the car.  I do not want to take a nap.  No mama, I will not take off this shirt.  

No, mama.

Also mama, I am hungry.  I am tired.  I am bored.  I don’t want to wear this.  I can only imagine how this will go when she can actually say NO and not just KITTY.  In addition to trying my patience, she’s pushing on my weaknesses.  I hate it when she throws her food on the floor.  It’s wasteful and messy.  She’s supposed to be eating.  She’s wasting our time.  Obviously, I’ve got issues with waste and control.  I want things to be neat and clean.  And she doesn’t have to eat if she doesn’t want to, but we could be playing or reading or really doing anything but making a giant mess and screaming.  

It’s not like this was a secret.  I have to work at not being this way (obviously, not always successfully).  I don’t want to give her issues with eating or getting dressed or, for that matter, napping, dancing, reading, whistling, or whittling.  Note to self, take away the wood carving tools.  I’m pretty sure that issues come from repeated actions and I’m not vain enough to think I’ve already ruined my one year old.  But, I’m worried I will have ruined my 12 year old.  So I catch myself asking D to feed her or simply taking her food away when she flings it on the floor.  But THEN I worry that I’m misreading her baby cues and OH NO, I’VE RUINED THE BABY.

On the bright side, she certainly knows how to sign “all done.” Half the time she signs it by slamming her hands down and smearing her food right off the tray. BUT! The other half, she moves them side to side in the air. That’s something!

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6 Responses

  1. It’s amazing how quickly they decide what they don’t want isn’t it? I worry all the time about breaking the babies or our six year old somehow. But then I figure they need to be able to blame me for something when they grow up…

  2. It’s crazy the amount of patience good parenting takes – and patience has never been my strong suit. It helps that I get to stay home with him, so there’s really not a schedule, but still, when it’s taking a lot of time to feed him and I haven’t eaten yet – I tell him he’s not being very fair 🙂

    It sure does help that they’re so cute!

  3. Our kid says I’m done like a champion eater. Her arms go above her head as fast as she can get them there. Also, I am having the same issue with being patient when she throws her food on the floor or feeds the dog. It drives me nuts! It takes everything in me to just take the food away and clean it up. Every. Time.

  4. Perhaps you should try moving her to the table (we used a chair that clamped onto the tabletop) and having her eat with you. Perhaps not the same food, but at the same time. That way you and your partner can talk and interact and EAT. We learn what we see. Pay attention to her while she is acting appropriately at the table.

    When she flips out ignore her. Hard to do sometimes, but really something you need to learn before she gets bigger. If she throws food, Ignore her completely. Wait until you have all finished eating before letting her down. Let her play in the food if she wants. She will figure it out.

    We kind of went through this with our son. By including him at the table with us, he felt more like part of the family and it changed the focus of everyone involved. It went from “feeding the baby”, to “eating dinner.” Don’t get upset if something spills. We’ve never yelled or gotten upset at spills at dinner, since that would increase their occurence by making our son self-conscious. And take deep breaths. A lot of deep breaths.

    Good luck.

    • believe it or not – we’re doing all those things except, of course, the deep breaths. I’m glad to know we’re on the right track – if it worked for you there must be promise!

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