Tuesday, February 15, 2011

oh Sam

Life with Sam is getting easier.

Sam is not an easy kid by anyone's definition of the word. But lately I have been seeing some glimpses of light at the end of the tunnel, or at least our current tunnel.

We use to battle over EVERYTHING. Now, she is learning to do more and more things herself, needs me a bit less and is surprising me with the good things that she does.

Our mornings -
On school days it use to be one fight after another to get her to eat breakfast, get dressed quickly, brush hair and teeth and get out the door. NOW she can dress herself! I simply pick out the clothes and lay them out for her. She can get dressed at her pace while I get Avery and myself dressed. This is huge! She is so proud of herself when she comes to find me and is fully clothed and neither one of us is mad at the other one.
Her hair. She HATES tangles, who doesn't. But she fights every tangle, pulling away from me, throwing things and screaming. SO, I instituted the "pause" rule. She is not allowed to scream, hit, throw things or pull away from me BUT she can say "pause" whenever she wants. I will then freeze and we will both count to five. She thinks this is great. Yes brushing her hair may take a few more seconds but we both leave happier and still have our patience with each other. Love the "pause"! And the more we do it the better she is getting about having less and less pauses. She is proud of herself when we only have two or three pauses per brushing. I love that.
I have figured out what she will eat for breakfast and stopped offering so many options. Toast, sausage, cheerios, banana, yogurt. These are the things she likes in the morning so everyday is some combination of these. Why bother with anything else?
Getting out the door use to be one of our biggest battles, she just never wanted to put her shoes or coat on. After a much needed conversation with our pastor I realized that what did it really matter? So she walked to the car (which is in the garage) in her socks and with no coat, big deal! By the time we get to school she is so excited to go to school that she is willing to do whatever it takes to get to class. It is much easier to deal with putting them on then!

I have learned to pick my battles and to not even think of them as battles any more. To get creative with my tactics and solutions. To try distraction more than yelling. To TRY to remember that she is still little but wants so badly right now to be big.

We are both learning, growing and getting better at this!

I can see different battles in our future (sharing, how we talk to friends, sister, ME, cleaning up, etc.) but for now I am thrilled that maybe, just maybe, life might be a little easier for a while.


Anonymous said...

Abbie, I loved this post! Makes me hopeful that I can find those great of solutions with my daughter when the time arises!

Sara said...

I love the pause idea. We have a curly head that is endlessly in knots. The head also happens to belong to a girl who I tend to but heads with over many a little thing (no pun intended).