We all know that when we become parents, we understand that it won’t be easy. Not only can having kids be stressful, its tests you. Your patience. It tugs at your heart strings. It makes your heart leap into your mouth with nerves. It can be a constant worry.
Now while the good times and happiness far outweigh the bad, there are times where I want to rip my hair out. Where I feel like I want to give up. Where I question my sanity and wonder where all these other moms get their amazing patience and calmness from. Because there are times where I feel like I’ve lost it…
I think I take after my dad when it comes to patience. And I definitely take after my mother when it comes to the amount I worry. How many of you have had your heart skip a beat when you see the caller ID on your phone from school or camp? Uh huh, thats me!
So whats happening now? Well over the past couple of weeks, our 21 month old son has been giving us a hard time going to bed. He used to go to sleep without a problem. We would go upstairs with some milk, read, sing a couple of songs, and in his crib he would go. He even used to play and talk to himself.
I don’t know what happened, but over the last number of nights it has turned into a battle. Last night alone took 2 hours to get him to sleep. TWO HOURS!!!
I’ve tried playing with the time we go upstairs; was I going too early? Was I going too late? Did I miss the window and now he’s overtired?
I’ve adjusted the number of books we read.
I sing to him for less time.
I rock the rocking chair. I don’t rock the rocking chair.
I try everything.
But the same thing happens every night, no matter what time it is…he gets sleepy in my arms and as soon as he feels me let him go down into his crib he starts wailing. And I mean WAIL.
I can remember when my oldest went through a phase like this but it feels like it happened at a different stage. And looking back, it seemed easier for some reason (I’m probably not remembering correctly am I?).
Regardless, the screaming and crying for the length of time it is makes me lose control. I lose it. I lose my patience. My calmness. My ability to rationalize my feelings, take a breath and focus. My ability to talk to him quietly and calmly.
People tell you a lot of things when you are pregnant and when you become a mom. And it is a dream come true. It is unconditional love. And nothing would ever change that. I know that one day (hopefully sooner rather than later) I’ll be looking back at this phase of toddlerhood and laugh about it. And I’m positive its nothing more than just a phase. But nothing quite prepares you for just how hard it really can be.
How do you handle high stress situations with your toddler? Any parenting advice for getting kids to sleep without a fight?