Monday, April 19, 2010

Not So Picture Perfect

Blogging is a weird place for me. It began as way for close family to be able to see pictures of Ryder while we were far from home. It later became an awesome way for me to document Ryder's life for our future since i'd be broke if I printed off all the picture we take of him! I wanted it to be a source of journaling almost for me to put down the good, the bad, and the ugly. I notice though when we are having a rough day though i'll want to blog, but then hesitate because I don't want our friends, family, and bloggers judging me on our bad days. I have come to realize maybe I try to paint things a little too "picture perfect".

I read lots of blogs by people I do not know, but have children around Ryder's age. Most of them are younger moms like myself and are sort of like a group of girlfriends I can compare stories with. However, I feel like all of these mom's have children that are always perfect, eat all their veggies, never cry, play perfectly, never get their clothes dirty, don't even know what a tantrum is, always sleep through the night, don't hit, don't get cranky, never throw their food, behave in restaurants, and are geniuses! I feel as though we are the only ones struggling through anything with our almost twenty month old toddler who has hit his terrible-two's a little early.

I then had to question myself. If reader's of our blog aren't around (which no one is since we are in the middle of no where by ourselves through this awful rehab!) do I maybe paint that same picture of our family? Do I lead people to believe we always have smiles on our faces, that we play in fountains, color pictures with chalk, kick balls, read books, and go on fun adventures? Do I lead people to believe we always have our act together? I think I might in some sense.

I think part of us does it because we like to remember the good and forget the bad. I know I sure do! I hardly remember what it's like to be up all night with Ryder when he was an infant. I think to myself how bad was it really? All I can remember is how little he was, how cute he was, how sweet he smelled. I don't remember the bad. It's an amazing thing how we can do that!

Well... just for future reference when (or if...because right now it's so far from our minds it's crazy) we decide to have other children, I want to remember that Ryder was just like he is now and that is passes (it does right?!).

Ryder right now is being a terror... terrible two's? Someone told me they go from about 1 1/2 - 2 1/2. Well he will hit twenty months on Sunday, and I think we can consider ourselves well into this phase. Ryder right now requires constant attention, is throwing awful tantrums, hates being at home, isn't sleeping that great, throws pretty much everything, and loves to hit. We have good spans and we have bad, but it feels like the bad last forever. If we keep him busy with constant entertainment, walks in his stroller, trips to the park, rides in the car, and anything else we can think of it's all great. If we stop this for even a second to think about taking a phone call, relax, check e-mail... forget it! All hell breaks lose. Needless to say we are e-x-h-a-u-s-t-e-d!!!

We have tried spankings, time-outs, ignoring him, giving him what he wants. We basically have tried everything and honestly none of them really make him happy. We are writing it off as a "stage" that we will hopefully pass with all the change that is about to come up in our lives.

So there ya have it... it's not so picture-perfect. We love our little man with all our hearts and still want to love and kiss on him even when he's being not-so-nice. After this post I will go back to making everyone think he's the happiest boy in the world, but just needed to vent for one post... promise to get back to the happy picture posts pronto!!!


Christa said...

It's so funny that you say that because I've been thinking the same thing lately. A lot of blogger seems like they have the perfect everything, perfect house, perfect car, perfect kid, perfect life. And my life is FAR from perfect! As far as Ryder and his terrible will get better. My sister is 2 and she's into hitting etc. Combine that with my 3 1/2 year old brother and it's INSANE! It WILL pass! But it's def hard in the mean time. My LO is only 11 weeks but I watch my bro and sis during the day and I know how exhausting it can be! I'm here to talk :)

The Stevens Family said...

You are NOT alone!!!!! I promise you! Connor is very 'strong-willed!' I try to anticipate his tantrums (as I'm sure you do with Ryder) to help avoid them as much as possible. Connor has a one track mind....if he wants to throw rocks in the water, for example, & I tell him we can't or we can only throw a few...its the END of the world for him! Crying, turning red, plops himself on the floor pouting....yup! Its not as bad if I'm at home & know no one is watching. The tantrums are THE WORST in public (obviously). For example, my child will NO longer sit in a shopping cart unless you are stuffing his face with snacks (and even that doesn't work sometimes!). We had a full blown tantrum when I walked into Target yesterday & I tried to put him in the cart. There really isn't a right or wrong way with them at this age....they don't know how to communicate well & have learned they have a sense of independence at the same time--which leads to the lovely tantrums & 'strikes' he'll go on when he knows he wants something that I won't let him do/have!

And as far as baby geniuses...thats another thing for me! I read blogs on kids Connor's age that are saying all these words, playing all these learning games & repeating motions/words, etc. I get all discouraged, since Connor still basically babbles & sometimes forms things that sound like words?! I know I'm not doing anything wrong.

My child would rather fling his utensils that eat with them. He sometimes bites out of anger if he's really mad. He's been going on nap strike lately, since I'm not nursing...Yep--just know you are not alone!

All the best to you through this stage & just know that every parent goes through it...they might not want to admit it, but they all do! xoxox

Tricia said...

Danielle, You've met Page! You know she is NOT perfect! Like Ryder, she started her Terrible Twos right around Ryder's age now. She got a little better and then bam as soon as she turned 2, there it was again! With Page, the only thing that semi works for us is consistency and routine. She is a ROUTINE baby. We try to keep as much as we can routine, but that obviosuly doesn't always work. SHe's pretty good about adjusting, but we notice later that when her schedule was off, we have a couple rough days following.

This is completely natural and IT WILL PASS! I think most people don't blog about it because they don't want to air their dirty laundry (even if it is just... ahhh... I need a break!!!) Trust me, I've gotten to the breaking point before where I've had to tell Steve, you just need to take Page for a little while and I need to be away from her. I feel horrible saying it, but sometimes we do need a break, and maybe they do, too! If you ever need to talk, just let me know! I'm here!

The Stevens Family said...

I'm at work & can't message via facebook, so have to go this way for now~

I find in comfort in knowing you feel the same way as me thru all this, but hate you have to go thru it as well!

I get really discouraged when I read other mom's blogs with kids around Connor's age or even younger that know all their body parts, the alphabet, 10+ words...just basically repeat everything they say! I have yet to get a real 'wave' or 'clap' from Connor still....I swear he's done it but won't even do those on cue! We go over animal noises, body parts, colors, shapes, read, etc...he's interested & can keep his attention, but he's just not willing to repeat it all yet! I read Mom's concerns on (which its kind of comforting) about other kids Connor's age that are doing the same things. Not too worry--all kids develop at different ages/stages.

Connor is just like Ryder though when it comes to being a boy. He would much rather play in the mulch, throw rocks, and run his hands through the dirt, rather than recite the alphabet! Rest assured--our boys are normal!! I just keep reminding myself that...even after I see a little boy at the park Connor's age holding his mom's hand nicely, walking where she wants him to go, smiling at her, listening to her commands, no tantrums, etc. I have my child who keeps putting mulch in his mouth as I tell him "yucky...that belongs on the ground, not in our mouth" & pull his hand away....all for him to do it again as if its a game. Once I take the mulch away, the tantrum explodes! If I walk with him & hold his hand, more than likely he will be pulling me in the direction he wants to go (amazing how much control a tiny little boy has!). If I try to redirect him & explain why we're going a certain way, he will pull harder the other way, or just let his legs collapse & attempt to hit the ground & begin pouting! I just remind myself silently in my head--this is normal, this is normal, this is normal!

We are great Moms & aren't doing anything wrong. Its just a communication lapse between us & our little ones at this age. Our boys will be our best buddies, if they aren't already. They love us so much & depend on us, even if it doesn't show sometimes!

Let me know when you're in town--would LOVE to get the boys together & we need to catch up on the past year or so!! :)

Meant to be a mom said...

I know exactly what you mean. I mean I know sometimes my blog sounds like sunshine and rainbow. But I promise sometimes I'm having crappy moments too. I guess I don't want to document all my crappy moments because I do plan on making a blog book out of this blog for Cooper. I just don't want my random rants and raves and gosh knows what else all over it. But I know what you mean and don't worry at all. We all have bad things going on weather we admit it or not :)

I hope Ryder gets back into check soon :) Not cool Ryder, not cool!

Jen said...

Danielle, All I can say is it is a phase. He will always grow out of this and then you will feel he grows into another. If I can say one thing, whatever you do as discipline be consistent. Children like structure. We all know that most of those blogs try to make everything look so perfect, and you and I both know that it isn't if they have children. Always glad to listen to the venting. I know it's tough out there right now, and Ryder probably senses that a little bit too. Keep your head up and enjoy your little boy, in the blink of an eye he'll be all grown up. Hugs to you and Ryder. Love Jen