Tuesday, April 6, 2010

When it rains...it pours

Perhaps she's working on more teeth...
Maybe it's growing pains...
Oh, I know, she's bored... obviously she needs new toys.
Am I not giving enough spankings?

These are my thoughts every time Ava whines. And, while I don't want to beat a dead horse (ew, what a weird saying...) I need to vent again about this. Because... it's gone from bad to worse and all the while this momma is feeling like a capital F, Failure. :(

In the morning when she wakes up she hollers for "Dat" or "Momma". We cheerfully go in expecting some huggin's and kissin's - but rather, we are greeted with a glare face, frumpled brow and a little girl running to the furthest back corner of her crib to avoid us. And yes, I have cried about this. Some mornings we just take her out anyway and distract her into being happy with tickles and silly voices, and some mornings I just turn the light back off and leave her in there until I hear happy noises. No use in starting off that way intentionally...

But, to be totally honest. I'm feeling so defeated by this stage. AND SHE'S ONLY 1! 80% of the day is filled with whining or crying or direct disobedience. Gone are the days of playing nicely - Oh wait, we never had those. And, she wants to be outside all the time... which is great, only, our yard is in huge disrepair right now and so thats not always an option.

I've gotten over the red-faced slight humiliation thing when this happens in public. I've learned to just leave if it starts up (Thanks Kristi!) and I am seeking wisdom and ideas from anyone who wants to share. But, my heart feels sad today. And its raining...which means another day inside. I just put Ava back to bed because the fit-throwing is just out of control. So, I'm going to go rest in the Word and refresh.

I'd love your ideas on mothering in these situations.


The Sneaky Mommy said...

Mandi~I'm so sorry! I've been there! We always followed a little "checklist" during the whiny times: is she sick (ears/throat/etc), is she hungry, is she overly tired, is she just exerting her ability to whine? Sometimes it actually was an ear infection and other times it was a week of "tough love" through discipline. (I love you too much to let you continue in this sin.) Eventually we would turn a corner--but it took much diligence (which was wearing) before we saw happy results! I'll be praying God will give you the strength to discern Ava's needs and how best to deal with the little sweetheart! :)

Tiffany said...

Oh, I wish I had an answer.

Here is my two cents, but I feel like they are not much. Is she getting enough sleep?? I am an avid believer that many children do not get enough sleep, and I really promote sleep in my children and worked hard on their sleep patterns. Scotty at almost 20 months still naps twice a day. His sleep schedule looks like this.
Wake up: 7AM
AM nap: 9AM-noon
PM nap: 2-4
Bedtime: 7 PM
And I will say that if we are not able to follow this schedule for some reason he is a completely different child - grumpy, whiny, crying, screaming, etc. Cadi was the same way. (And she still takes a two hour nap in the afternoon at 4 years old.)
Now this may not be the problem, and I know I am in the minority with this sleep thing. It is just a thought.
I will be praying for your patience and graciousness Mandi. It's hard when we are given cute little balls of sin nature to mother!

beccarankin said...

I feel your pain.... One book I've read that I've found super helpful with little tips is "To Train Up a Child" by Michael and Debi Pearl.

I know Liz Worsham likes this book, as well.

Obviously I've been a little out of the discipline thing for the past year or so, but... when I was using some of their ideas with Karis it helped so much. I have the book if you want to borrow it. :-)

Sara said...

I feel your pain as well. Ellie is just a little shy of being only 13months old and she is a great whiner already... I do the check list as well when Ellie starts whining. When did she last eat, is she thirsty, is she teething, is she hot, wet, dirty, when did she last take a nap.

I also will just place her in another room surrounded by toys and walk away.

Sometimes i find that if I have been really busy with house work or errands that she is whining because she just wants me to spend a little quality time with her.

Also I really think that babies can sense any major life changes taking place in the family and that throws them into attention seeking moods as well. For me, I'm 9months pregnant and Ellie could have a little brother any day now and I think she senses that things are going to change so she's been in more of an attention seeking mood lately.

I know that God will continue to give you strength. Thank you for being honest about your frustrations it encourages me to be honest about mine and reminds me that i am not alone.
God will continue to give you strength and I know that you know that.

becky said...

Mandi...I'm sorry that things have been rough lately. We have been struggling with some of the same things. I don't know that I have an answer for you...except...be consistent and pray lots (for wisdom). If your consistent in discipline now while she is just young...it will pay off when she is 2, 3, and older....I will be praying for you and Ava as I pray for Hannah and I. Hang in there hun...you're doing a good job!

lee said...

Mandi, you're not alone. As so many other readers have commented, we all face this issue in our children. Second, you're not a failure. I think dads have a natural tendency to not blame themselves for their children's behavior, and moms are usually the opposite. But it isn't you, you're not a failure. Last, and this is the only advice I can give, but it doesn't help in the short term. Keep repeating the phrase, "it's just a stage" because chances are, if you just keep doing what you're doing, she'll grow out of it at some point! Don't be discouraged!