25 October 2012

X files - 2.5 Years Old - Sometimes you feel like a nut, sometimes you dont

had some big successes this month (during which we felt totally awesome) and some days where we felt totally bat shit crazy. i think ive given up on the pendulum ever stopping swinging. but i have noticed ive been able to tell myself during the bat shit times "hey, just get through this moment, assess what you can change to make things more smooth in the immediate future, and move on without looking back" and i can at least keep moving without feeling like "alexander and the terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day". and during the wonderful times, ive been trying to remind myself to just enjoy the little slice of nice.

obsessions: eating like a dog (no hands), identifying old v new asphalt/cement, having her cars (aka us) talk to her during ALL daily activities, putting all kinds of things (not food) in her mouth (driving me ABSOLUTELY insane)
good books: wild child, the tomten, im tickled pink, super grandpa, melvin might?, emily and daisy, princess sylvie, children of the forest, dexter bexley and the big blue beastie, down the road, hilda must be dancing, horace and morris but mostly dolores, one witch, do you know pippi longstocking?, dandelion, planes, trick or treat on monster street, zoozical

(the rare daytime nap in bed; driving cars on the sidewalk; running around the playground)
(upside down; serious about carrying her chalk around to make an impromptu road for her cars; off-roading cars at the park)

(downward dog; silly faces with papa; balance bike action)

X-citing developments:
1. dentist. she sat on daves lap during his dentist appointment and watched all aspects of his cleaning. afterward, the dental hygienist looked at Xs mouth and teeth and said everything looked great. hooray! she seemed to like the dentists office and was very curious about everything, so that was good.

2. wonder week/dayz. im just going to keep calling them wonder weeks because these brief time periods of strife always make me wonder if ive lost my sanity. they make me wonder if an alien has invaded my kids body. they make me wonder if i could possibly be the worst parent in the world. and then, just like that, it makes me wonder if it was all a bad dream. it makes me wonder if i truly have lost my mind. damn i hate those days. we had more than our fair share this period.

3. sleep. so i mentioned having short naps again and a nap routine last time. ha. gone. she will agree, most days, to a nap at around 3p or 4p (for between 15-30 minutes, depending on how crappy she slept at night). but, they usually require a stroller or car ride. thankfully it doesnt seem to affect her bedtime or her ability to get to sleep by herself. i dont know if the change is day care related or if she is trying to have a growth spurt or fight off germs or all of the above.

also, for bedtime, i switched from talking about all the things we did that day to telling her something(s) i was impressed by or appreciated about her behavior that day, and something that she (and/or i) need to work on (based on what happened that day). then i give her a hug and kiss and say a few things and step out of the room, slowly close the door, stay nearby for a few minutes. and she is asleep! all by herself. freedom!

4. physical. she has been working on:
- balancing on one leg
- jumping really high
- balance bike skills. hooray! only 6 months belatedly using of her birthday gift.
- yoga poses she can do: downward dog, cobra, bridge, cat, cow. i noticed her doing these one day and wonder if they are doing them in day care or if i have done them in front of her at some point and she remembered.

5. personality. she:
- likes riding in or pulling luggage around the house
- likes to sit and watch the activities of a street. the cars/buses/trucks/people/dogs/etc and the sounds and things going on.
- took greater interest in building with blocks these past two months
- appears to have acquired the genetic trait of whacking people when excited about something. my mom does it, i do it, X does it. even though i dont have anyone that i whack around here, she still somehow acquired this trait. bizarre.
- immediately crunches hard candy. just like me. no patience.

6. language/learning.
- she is starting to ask "why" all the time. lovely!
- by car/bike/stroller/walking, she can often tell you which street we are on without an adult mentioning it. and, if we are within a decent radius of home she can tell you which street(s) you need to turn on to get home, and she can give alternate routes too. sometimes we take her on a whole new route and she can still recognize familiar streets even if we enter them in novel ways.
- she has taken to saying "shit" (it sound like "sit") when she is frustrated. we ignore it. she also says crap as in "um, theres a pile of crap over here". these two words really arent offensive to me and she uses them correctly, and since we dont react to them they arent over used. im not sure what place they will have in her future vocabulary or how much i will curb them.
- we have had to work on conversation interrupting with her. she likes to be heard and included, all the time. she will scream or yell or repeat loudly what we say if she wants to talk. we are working on changing this!
- she is learning to distinguish left from right.
- in a stack of pancakes, for example, she ignores the one on top in search of the biggest one. lol.

anecdotes:
- she conveys complex actions: while on a walk one night she said, "when i get up to queen st, i will give each of you a hug".
- she has been telling us stories lately: "when i was a little kid i planted some seeds, but i wasnt careful and i fell off a cliff. i had to get stitches. the boo boo went away but i still have a scar", "jack the blue horse went in to the woods with the blue princess...", "when i was a little kid some robbers came to steal my highchair, but i took it back...'im a strong girl like you, pippi longstocking' (sometimes she tells these stories to imaginary characters in the room)"
- dave was telling her at dinner that people in finland like to wear light blue clothes. he went on to say that women in france wear black clothes and black sunglasses. without missing a beat (and coming out of nowhere) X said, "just like sara. is sara from there?" (sara is her babysitter). its crazy to me that she heard this information about france for the first time, scanned her memory and knew that sara wears a lot of black and has black sunglasses and then tried to put the two together.
- when sara was getting ready to leave one day, X said "im not going to let you go" and then she put her feet on top of saras feet and said "now you cant go".

7. self-care.
- she can put her shoes on
- she is learning to put her shirts on (and take them off) and pull her pants down and up. socks also seem a passing interest.

momma mentionables:
1. daycare. it took her about 1.5 months to be okay getting dropped off at daycare (and by okay i mean only whimpering or making a sad face). she really showed us she has a hard time with change. there was lots of screaming/wailing before i would leave. after a while, the goodbye at daycare really was too lengthy (i would try to read a book with her before leaving) and resulted in too much crying (including sobbing "im going to cry all day"). so, we switched tacks and have a short but heartfelt goodbye and all has been much better. she is so content whenever i come to pick her up, it makes me feel so right about it.

at first, she had the hardest time with the very gregarious, loud, fast-moving, little boy there and was aggressive toward the littler kids in the first weeks...but with patient, gentle guidance from the daycare woman, that has stopped. now that she is comfortable with each childs personality and behavioral tendencies i can see that she is much happier knowing what to expect in her environment.

2. reclaim. with daycare i think i found a way to happily achieve more balance. i can work during the day much more easily now and have my after-dinners and nights free. i feel like i can reclaim more of myself for me now. im carving out time to exercise (a little), to modify our eating habits, to just relax watching videos/reading. im actually feeling a sense of laze-about boredom on some evenings. im sure if i had more friends or family around i would be able to fill my time out more fully than i do now, but it is what it is. if we werent about to move, id be inclined to take a night class or join a book club. but that just seems futile right now. so, i'll busy myself with ticking things off our to-do list and enjoying some quiet time to myself. harried times are right around the corner.

3. clothes. im feeling SO, so antsy to get back to my full wardrobe in michigan storage. ive traveled with this small collection of clothes (one and a half drawers and a dozen-ish hangers in the closet) for far too long (4 years!). i want to wear other things for a while. im also feeling a need to slightly redirect my style to include more stylish activewear and less sweatpant/fleece type things. i have totally played into the mom stereotype of not wearing nice clothes anymore. to be honest, extreme casual was my style before, but never this sloppy. i need to add leggings (dear god) and more yoga pant-type things so that i can actually look like i have a body, which will, in turn make me feel like a have a body. i dont need to tent myself in pajamas all day, but im really digging moveable, comfortable clothes instead of stiff, tighter corduroys which currently take up a bulk of my dresser space. so, part of this upcoming move will be SO greatly appreciated because i can rejuvenate my "style". ha. looking forward to it.

4. no smug. ive been feeling for a while like i should declare how totally clueless and inept i feel most moments of my life, as a parent and otherwise. on occasion it comes to my attention that things i write here may come across as know-it-all-y or smug. it would be foolish on both our parts to interpret things like that, cuz i dont know shit. as if i didnt know that before, lately ive had the overwhelming sense that that is even more true now than before. i think there are quotes about how knowing that you dont know things indicates wisdom. i like that idea, but i in no way mean to backhand compliment myself. no, i just feel clueless. in the parenting realm, at least, im feeling a sense that this cluelessness has actually finally allowed my head and my heart to fully agree that parents really are just doing their best...for themselves and for their kids, and that there is, indeed, more than one way to skin a cat (ive loved that phrase since high school anatomy class). my heart really believed it before, but my head would cloud over and numb out the true weight of that sentiment. anyway, im interested to see what i can learn from wallowing in this sea of not-knowing-ness. may i become prune-y with wisdom. ha.

5. blood type diet. we are dabbling in this since dave saw mention of it on his beloved mgoblog. its not a diet in the sense that you do it to lose 5 pounds. its more like a way of eating and living healthy thats most compatible with your blood type. at first it sounded horoscope-y to me. but theres actually a lot behind it and the suggestions in the "live right for your type" book just make sense to me and my body. as i was reading it was i like "interesting, ive always felt like stress affected me in that way" or "indeed, that kind of exercise has always made me feel worse instead of better". the food suggestions have also been interesting, though they are so numerous that we recognize we cant just switch over in a week. we made a little list to post on our wall of things to try to increase and decrease in our daily food choices, and it will evolve from there. one day we may find ourselves fully following the "diet" but for now its more of a sign post. i have type A blood and there do seem to be things that really are "type A" (this line of thinking/research is where that organizationally anal label came from), and dave is type O and there really are things that make sense about him in that.

1 comment:

Mary Ann said...

Thank you again for maintaining your blog. You are very much in transition, as am I (is everyone?) I think of you a lot and I would like to send my positive thoughts to you. I do believe that you I'll settle in safely and comfortably and that friendships will emerge in time. In the meantime, know that you are doing a fine job. Please keep writing and your photos are wonderful.