I've learned a lot this week....here are some of the highlights:
- A 4 year old can hurt your feelings if you care about him! Here's what happened: I was going to read him a bedtime story, then told Justin he should come too and we'd take turns. Once it was my turn to read Hylan started crying, saying he only wanted his dad to read. And yes, I acted almost as immature as I sulked out of the room...thinking "Well, you better hope you don't want anything to eat tomorrow until your dad gets home tomorrow from work!" Good job on being the mature one Loriann!
- A 4 year old can also make you feel great, by saying the most unexpected and sweet things. Here's a few: The morning after the reading incident, when we woke up he told me I was very pretty and gave me a hug! Apparently when my hair is sticking in every direction, and my mascara is where my blush should go, I am pretty! If only I'd learned this years ago! He also told me today that I made the best chicken in the world and the potatoes and broccoli were great too! Awww...isn't that sweet! He tells me I'm nice, asks for hugs, snuggles with me, and says thank you everyday! (He may be ahead of his dad in this category!)
- Kids eat a lot of freakin' food : I started putting small amount on his plate...but I think this week he's going through some sort of growth spurt. He can eat a lot! I give him a good sized plate, about as big as mine, and he eats it all. And he's great about fruits, vegetables, milk, and all the other shit that he should eat and drink. He actually does! He just eats it constantly. It shocks me because about an hour and a half after eating he wants a snack! He's actually hungry again. Where do kids put all this food? I'm not sure, I think it's one of those great mysteries, and the fact that he's growing....either way, I'm just happy he's not one of those picky pain in the ass kids that only eats 4 things! He had chicken tonight that was a tad spicy and although he noticed it, he thought it was good!
- Ignoring the tantrums really does work! The tantrums in question, ONLY happen occasionally, and ONLY when Justin is home. I'm not sure exactly why. Maybe it's that I'm generally the one that makes the rules, and he's used to being with his mom, so he listens better to women? Maybe he's just testing his dad to see what he will do. Whatever the reason, if he doesn't get his way and he is a little cranky, he will stomp off and pout. And I let him. He generally goes into his room and within 2-3 minutes he comes out, all better, and smiling like the great little boy he is. I make it a point to discuss what happened when he comes out, why he didn't get what he wanted, and I make him apologize. And it works! Did I say that yet??? He gets over it all by himself and carries on with the day!
- Kids wake up early and any mom who says her kid doesn't watch tv lies! Ok, I don't know if that second part is actually fact, but I do know that the cartoons that are on in the morning save my life. I am not a morning person and I don't sleep well at night. Generally, Justin gets up for work, (waking me 20 times for various things that I don't care to remember), then leaves. I fall back to sleep for about 20 minutes, then I hear the little foot steps coming and the cute little "I'm hungry." And I get up and so begins the day. But as I sit there in that awful morning fog, trying to put out something for breakfast that is good for him, will fill him up, and is not too advanced for my morning skill level, he is glued to his cartoons. And I'm okay with that. This is how mornings start. While he eats his breakfast, watching cartoons, I lay on the couch and try to wake up and become a functioning, coherent member of society.
- I'm not sure what's worse...Justin or Hylan, but I think Justin is: Hylan listens to me when I say to take his shoes off outside on the porch so he doesn't track mud in the house. Justin...not so much. Hylan listens when I ask him not to run through the house, because socks and hard wood floors equal falls and stitches. I'd prefer not to go to the ER anytime soon. Justin thinks it's a great idea that he chases Hylan through the house in those damn socks. (The yard just aren't big enough apparently!) Although Justin is quite good at understanding my "What the fuck are you doing? And why are you doing the opposite of what I tell him all day" look. So I guess that's good. Hylan understands quiet time and when it's almost bed time he knows it's time to settle down for bed. Justin thinks it's a great idea to play monster when he puts him to bed at night. I sit here, listening to the giggling and screaming from the bedroom. Honestly, it's really cute. And I love watching Justin play with him. And it makes Hylan so happy. It's not the end of the world that he does the opposite of what I try to get into Hylan's head all day long, but I worry that he will get confused. And I just know that one day the "Dad lets me" will come out. (At which point Justin will get the phone call where his life is threatened!)
- Kids are messy...another one that's not a shocker! Hylan is traumatized by two things..one is his hands being dirty and the other is water in his eyes. Not even soap....just the water itself is enough to freak him the hell out. It's amusing when I'm giving him a bath & rinsing his hair. I tell him NOT to touch his eyes as it's just water and will dry. He continually rubs his hands, that are full of soap, into his eyes. And now, there is soap in your eyes buddy!! And the handwashing....my god, this kid wants to wash his hands 100x a day! During his lunch, he stops eating, just to ask if he can wash his hands when he's done! It cracks me up. But it's not the worst habit that's for sure! The amount of dirty clothes he's collected in 4 days is shocking! The amount of stickiness on all things in my house is also shocking! ANd the poops...well, his poops are scary, but if you read my facebook you already know. And yes, I've gotten better at helping him wipe. I no longer gag! I'm considering that a big step in the right direction!
- It's not easy....although I've never thought it was...but I'm just making it clear again. He is a great little kid. But he's a little kid. And sometimes the constant questions are down right annoying. Maybe it's because I don't have all the answers? Maybe it's because "Like one million" just annoys me after hearing it as the "amount" for anything? Who knows. But it does get old sometimes. And when Justin gets home, the first thing I want to do is go sit on the porch alone for a little bit before making dinner. I just don't have the same amount of energy as this boy does, that's for sure!
But really, it's been fun! My neighbor Misty has been nice and helped me if I am unsure about something, or just need to vent so I don't scream. And she has a little girl, and tomorrow we are going to the park! I'm quite excite too. I'm really looking forward to talking to an adult for a little bit!!
So that's my story so far! It's been fun, much more than I'd expected. It's an adjustment, that's for sure, but it's also nice seeing somebody so happy and positive every day! And don't get me wrong, I have a ton of respect for all you that have multiple kids, jobs, and do this every freakin' day. I know that I have one big plus going for me, and that is that he is going back to his mom's house in a few days! If it gets really bad, I remind myself of that!