Thursday, November 21, 2013

Rocking Chair Epiphanies

I swear, sitting in the rocking chair is when I have my most profound thoughts ... not sure if it's the climate in the room or the fact that I'm sitting under a tree ... either way, I come away from rocking my children with my head reeling. Sometimes the thoughts are deeply personal and life changing and other times ... well, not so much. Today's thought was half-way inbetween and I wanted to write it down, so I did.

I was feeding Audrey while rocking her and thinking about a friend of mine who is going through a rough pregnancy. There are probably, like, 800 different things I could do to help her. I could watch her other kids or bring her meals or let her rest and help out with homework ... the list goes on and on, but everytime I offer, she says, "We're doing fine. Thanks." uh ... ok ... that's alright, I'll ask again later. But as I continue to inquire how she is doing and continue to offer my assistance, she continually says, "no thanks." I finally reach the point where I ball up my fists and practically scream in frustration WHY WON'T SHE LET ME HELP HER?!? Why does this bother me so much ...?
**Thanks Laura for the GIF's**

This led me to think about Aaron and his friends Eli and Tommy and Sam.

Aaron and Eli play super well together. They are the closest in age and they have similar interests. Each lets the other tackle, hug, share, help, etc. It is a give and take relationship (sometimes literally, but hey, they are only 2). Aaron and Eli both get out of the friendship what they need so it works, ridiculously well.

Then there is Aaron and Tommy. Aaron and Tommy play very different games - Tommy having grown up with a sister favors certain games while Aaron favors others. After attempting to merge with Tommy's games, Aaron tries to coax him to play his games. He wants to play but eventually, Tommy tires and moves on. It gets to the point where Aaron balls up his fists, screams in frustration, and ... hits. **note, I am not saying this is Tommy's fault, just observing how the situation evolves.

Aaron and Sam are only 3 months apart. But Sam at this stage in life wants nothing to do with Aaron. It is possibly because every time Aaron sees him, Sam seems sad and Aaron wants to smother him with love; hugs, kisses, pats on the head ... And Sam wants none of this. After repeatedly walking away from Aaron, It gets to the point where Aaron balls up his fists, screams in frustration, and ... pushes. **note, I am not saying this is Sam's fault, just observing how the situation evolves.

Aaron is experiencing the same emotion and level of frustration as I am. Is it my friend's fault that I am frustrated? No. Is it Tommy's and Sam's fault that Aaron lashes out? No. We both need to control that emotion and reign it in - Aaron being only 2 is only capable of feeling one emotion at a time and being so small, that emotion takes control of him. Kind of how J.M. Barrie describes fairies. Fairies have to be one thing or the other, because being so small they unfortunately have room for one feeling only at a time.

As a mom, I have to learn to not get frustrated when Aaron gets frustrated and not get embarrassed either. The way Aaron acts as a situation changes is not a reflection on him - he is not a bad kid for hitting, and it is not a reflection on me - I am not a bad mom because he hits. It is simply something we need to work on. Other moms realize (or ought to realize...) that this is the case thus eliminating the need for embarrassment. And to all of you other people at the grocery store who give me looks when Aaron is having a hard time - I wish you 1000 years of crying children that you cannot control. Take that.

Throughout the week that we watched Tommy, we worked on communication both ways. Tommy learned to say, "Aaron, please don't do that," and Aaron learned to listen. Aaron learned to ask Tommy nicely to play with him and ... we are still working on Aaron being ok with the answer, "no" that came every once in a while. Again, he is only 2 and Tommy is only 3. But it is amazing how much progress they both made in a week of constant contact. I just need to continue to expose Aaron to other children with opposing personalities and views so that he can continue to learn and grow.

Anyway, that was my thought today. I'll end with some pictures :)

Remember Aaron's boat fascination? Here he is in his boat in the water - he played for an hour and a half.
Aaron is fond of snuggling and Audrey is fond of snuggling - so this works. Some nights, he sleeps the entire night in there, other nights, he simply pays her a visit, gives her a kiss, and goes back to his bed.

Aaron loves to pull Audrey in and say, "come on Audrey, let's watch!" He reaches over with his arm and helps her come close so she can watch a show with him. 

Today, in honor of Grams, we took pictures of Audrey in purple.

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