It’s been quite a week with Little Man. He’s in this phase (I hope it’s a phase!) where paying attention isn’t really on his radar. Big Man and I have to repeat things several times before getting a response and sometimes Little Man will just ignore us entirely. To say this tries the patience is a huge understatement! Having to repeat everything or raise my voice to get a response is really frustrating. Little Man is not a brat and he doesn’t disobey all that often, for which I am thankful. I am just praying we find a way to get beyond this inattentive behavior sooner rather than later.
There have definitely been a few days where I reach my limit by 10 in the morning. So I take a Mommy Time Out, which means I put something on the TV for the kids, make myself a nice, sweet cup of coffee, and sit down with a book or the iPad. I’m still in the room to keep an eye on things, but Little Man and Little Lady know they are to entertain themselves and not ask me to play with them until I’m finished with my coffee. It usually works pretty well, I feel like there has been a “reset” on the day and we’re ready to start again.
As nice as that is, though, the biggest thing that has been helping me avoid completely losing patience is giving Little Man back-rubs. It’s pretty much impossible to resist when he comes over and says, “Mommy, would you like to rub my back?” So we snuggle on the couch and I rub his back. I make myself take some deep breaths, consciously try to relax, and pray. I thank God for my family and the privilege of being home with them full time. I ask Him for continued patience for myself, and that I would model His love to my Little Ones. And I pray that Little Man and Little Lady would come to faith at a young age and walk with God always. Prayer is absolutely the best thing for keeping my own behavior in check and reacting correctly to the Little Ones. I’m definitely not perfect and sometimes I hold on to the frustration and stress for far too long. But I think I’m learning, and I hope I’m setting a good example for my kids.
What about you? I’d love to hear your methods for remaining calm and loving when your family is pushing your buttons.