Monday, January 24, 2011

The Forgetten Days

This week my morning babysitter is out of town so Parker is getting up early with Mom everyday.  He is so funny when he is in the store with me....he is the most content when he is helping.  This morning he was windexing the tables and then part of the wall and then part of the cabinet and the the trash receptacles.  He came up to me and said, "I am cleaning anything that I find that is dirty Mom!"  If only all of my employees had that mentality!  It was great having him there.  I feel like I am being a bit bipolar about me feelings about Parker at work with me.  Last week he had two snow days and was there with me in the afternoon.....afternoon = awful.  morning = great.  Why you ask....because in the morning, it is just us.  He helps and listens.  He knows his limitations.  In the afternoon he can not help as well.  There are other people there that he feels like he needs to entertain.  After he helped me, we went to school.  I have had the opportunity to drop him off at school about 6 or 7 times this year (I think it may be more like 5 times).  I love taking him to school.  I love that I can give him a good bye kiss and tell him to have a good day.  It makes me feel like a great mom when I am able to take him.  But then I drive back to work and I get this sinking feeling in my stomach....I have dropped him off at daycare hundreds of times and it never bothered me, but the few times I have taken him to school, I leave and I am sad.  I can't do it everyday so it is special.  We have a fun morning together and then it is school time and work time.  Every time I have taken him I realize I want to be the one with him in the morning.  I hate having to have a babysitter make his breakfast and remind him to brush his teeth....that is my job.  But it is also my job to provide a stable life for him which means working and for me that starts early.  Now this has turned into me bitching about not getting to do everything I I will stop.  This week is a nice vacation from the norm that I am looking forward Friday though, he is totally going to be over waking up at 5:30 am with me.  Like Zach said last week, "Child labor has never been so cute."

Sunday, January 23, 2011

The Mean Mommy Zone

It is official.  I am now considered to be a "Mean Mommy."  How do I know?  I am reminded of this at least once a week (in a good week).  I remember the days when he told me I was a beautiful Mommy and on a very VERY rare occasion he would tell me I was mean.  In those days, immediately after he called me Mean Mommy, he would well up and beg in tears for forgiveness.  Now, not so much.  I am a Mean Mommy who is always mean to him and never lets him have anything.  How do I respond to this?  Sometimes I tell him that him saying that hurts my feelings.....sometimes I tell him that nice little boys don't call their Mommy's mean......sometimes I tell him that it is okay for him to feel that way but he should know that Mommy always loves him.  These don't get through, just in case you are waiting for your turn to enter the Mean Mommy Zone, don't try Mommy guilt.  For some (me when I was a child) it worked, but for other personalities like Parker's, it is like nothing gets through.  I have decided that it is time to just tell him the truth.  Yes, I am being mean and harsh and not letting him get his way because his behavior is keeping him from being happy and laughing and enjoying our time together.  Even that doesn't work.  He doesn't see that I am not "mean" first but his listening deteriorates or he behavior goes south or his manners disappear.  He doesn't see his contribution to the situation that we eventually find our selves in.  How do you point it out?  Well sometimes I tell him at that very moment that his _______ (whatever it maybe at that moment) is creating a situation that will cause him to have a time out or early bedtime or privileges taken away.  But that generally ends in an argument because he doesn't recognize his bad behavior.  I get frustrated, I am not going to lie.  I realize at some point in time during the conversation that I am arguing with a 5 year who really should just be listening to me because I am his Mommy.  Then I pull out the grownup card, which ultimately doesn't work.  I am at a loss with him.  This is my favorite and most unfavorite time in his life so far.  We are still very close but nothing I say gets through to him.  It makes me wonder if I was co-parenting, what the difference in his behavior would be.  It makes me wonder what his behavior would be if his father gave a shit about him.  I should rephrase that last sentence, what it would be like if his dad showed daily interest in his life instead of sporadic interest.  I will never know about those two things though.  Parenting a 5 year old is hard.  It is harder that I anticipated at the beginning of Kindergarten.  I wonder what the contributions are.....6 months ago he started Kindergarten and I started dating mr.  Neither of us were in downtown anymore, our entire life's routine was turned upside down.  I know that this is another developmental phase, but this one is more personal than "just a phase."  It feels like now more than ever I should be completely dedicated to him and his life and development, but putting my life on hold will only make me always put my life on hold and he will never have real attachments to anyone besides me because no one else with be introduced to our lives because I am only ever devoted to him.  *deep breath*  You can see my mental parenting dilemma.  I can only wait it out.  See what happens around the corner.  I have heard that 6 and 7 are a little better than 5.......