Sunday, January 18, 2015

A Challenging Week

Remember when I said things were looking up as of Tuesday? Well Stockton started being really fussy that night and then literally moaned all day on Wednesday. He was still very sad and whimpery on Thursday and I finally took him to the doctor on Friday because I didn't know where my content Stockty had gone and knew something was up. Sure enough: ear infection, so he's been on the antibiotics since then and is getting better, but still pretty sensitive.

Natalie is not sick anymore but has become quite the little tantrum queen. She gets irrationally upset over tiny, insignificant things and dissolves into inconsolable yells, screams, tears, whimpers, and floor flops and flails. I try to reason with her and be logical ("we have to wear coats when we go outside in winter or we'll freeze" or "you just ate an andes mint and a cookie, you don't need m&ms right now, would you like a banana" etc) but there is no getting through to her. I'm not sure what the magic switch is but there definitely is one because all of a sudden she'll just be freaking out and you don't know what hit you. Then after two, five, or ten minutes she's ready to come to you for help and it takes her another ten minutes to properly calm down and stop crying and be ready to move on. Until the next episode, at least.

at Target, mad because she couldn't
get Elmo out of his packaging

at Barnes, mad because she didn't
want to go out of the front doors

at Renetta's...not even sure what she was mad about, but this in the
calm down phase of her tantrum

It makes me feel like a failure as a parent because I can't figure out how to teach her to manage these emotions, reasonable or not. Sometimes she has a somewhat understandable reason for freaking out (doesn't want to leave a friend's house, misses Daddy when he goes to work) but more often it's something ridiculous, like she doesn't want to wear shoes or I didn't get her out of her high chair fast enough. I don't know how to get her to calm down quickly, or even better, to stop the tantrum from happening in the first place. It is a helpless feeling, and then continues to bring me low as I listen to her wail, filling our home with stress and frazzlement. I don't want to give in to her irrational demands when that is what she is mad about, but I also don't want these freak outs to last forever. I wish I had better tools to deal with this tantrum phase (please oh PLEASE just be a limited phase, yikes) and have been praying for guidance in how to deal with my normally sweet Natsby.

Any advice is appreciated and helpful, or just some reassurance and support. Am I alone? Am I doing something wrong? This mommy is tired and needy!

(Dearest Natalie, if you are reading this in years to come, know that I love being your mom and it is always worth it! You still give me lots of love and cozies and joy throughout these hard days and make me happy, I just wish I could help you more through this unpleasant time so that we could get back to a more emotionally stable place. You're wonderful, my love!)

happy moments in our week, too : ) 
also, this new recipe we tried this week is a keeper!


  1. Being two is tough! Not a lot of control over your life, lots of big emotions, and being unsure about how to deal with them is a recipe for a perfect storm. Here's what's worked with Juliana: give two acceptable choices. "Do you want to wear your pink shoes or your blue shoes?" "Do you want to wear your coat or hold your coat?" Then, let her experience some consequences. (She may be cold without her coat, hat, or mittens on. She may have to sit in the cart if she can't walk nicely.). Good luck and hang in there!!

  2. THIS TOO SHALL PASS! You're doing great, seriously. Sometimes being a momma is SO HARD! And being two is so hard because they're trying to exercise their free agency they just don't quite get it! Just keep hanging in there. There was a post this week on about discipline. You're probably already doing most of the things but one I liked was to tickle tantrums away. Casey does this with Max sometimes and he really responds to it. I've never done it and am not sure I ever could, maybe I'm just not that parent but hey, maybe try it. I miss you. Make your family get unsick and let's have a playdate!