Friday, August 1, 2014

I'm a Yeller...but I'm working on it.

There's something about this transition into toddler beds that has brought out the absolute worst-Mommy-version of myself. I'm not sure if it's because this new sense of freedom for the boys is making them feel defiant and independent, but whatever the reason, they are straight up not listening to me. Oh, they hear me alright. I can see the little smirks on their faces when I ask them to, "Come here," or "Lay down, please", but they actively choose to not listen to me.

This is when the yelling begins. I definitely do it out of anger and frustration and I LOATHE it. I used to hate when my Mom would yell at my sister and I for mundane things, and it created a lot of anxiety in the house. So why the heck am I doing it to the boys?

I think the more I yell, the more they think it's funny, and it just turns into one angry and tense household. I was so stressed out yesterday just because everything felt like a freaking battle. Just to change a diaper I felt like I was pinning down an "enemy" and trying out various tactics and maneuvers to "win the war".  To try and get them to hold my hand while walking to the car was one of the hardest physical challenges I've had in a while--not that I'm a triathlete, but my boys are becoming very strong and are also very fast at running.

So after a really terrible day yesterday, I woke up this morning and told myself, "This is not you. You're not a yeller. Do not scream at those boys."

And you know what? Today has already proven to be infinitely better. The moment I would catch myself feeling anxious and wanting to scream, I would start singing a song, and the boys would totally feel the energy and start bobbin' their heads and WANTING to listen to me. Or if one of the boys broke down into a meltdown, I would ignore them and play or clean.

It's a small effort and adjustment, but it was a complete game changer. So if you're finding yourself wanting to scream at your children, just start singing! Or dancing! Or doing something completely random, because life is too short to be screaming at your babies for merely wanting to become their own people.
Oh haaaaaaay, Mom. We are super sweet and enjoy snack-picnics when you're not a crazy lady yelling at us. 


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