What was her name? Annie right? That was one of my favorite stories when I was a little kid. In fact, at dance the other day Saylah picked up the level 1 reading book of it and it brought back memories. I was always so impressed with how stubborn and tenacious she was when trying to connect Helen to the world.
After this week, I’m pretty sure I’m tougher than teacher Annie.
When we first had kids I completely got on board the “pay now or pay later” mentality. You know the one … the theory that you either teach your kids now to do the right thing and go through the tough love when they are young so that when they are older they already have a good foundation of right and wrong. OR you don’t do that and realize when they have become terrors that you may not be tough enough for the tough love they are going to require to now achieve those principals.
Well, I still agree with the theory. HOWEVER, with Mr. I-man, I’m nearly a year behind. And, man am I paying for it already!
I’m not a fan of new year’s resolutions, but after seeing how mouthy Isaac is becoming (yes, mouthy – even in toddler gibberish) and that our youngest is quickly showing signs of little Napoleon potential, I thought it best to make one primary resolution: Isaac Behavior Bootcamp. (I have to admit I stole the name from my bestie. Thanks Jenn!)
So IBB started this week when the girls went back to school. So far I’m winning … I think … and by a very narrow margin. It has become clear to me that I’m not entirely within my wheelhouse of knowledge (like that sports reference? Thanks Ben.) on this one. Isaac’s boy is coming out. It’s good of course, but it is entirely different for me.
With the girls, when they did something wrong, they’d get scolded which would typically be followed by them crying, carrying on, and the need to perpetually talk about it. Isaac on the other hand; when he gets scolded actually sticks out his bottom lip, then more often than not, he gets angry and withdraws.
He gets over it quickly but I have noticed he needs space to get himself back to center. (I wonder if that’s what Ben has been telling me all these years when we have our “discussions”? ;) hmm)
So, whereas at one – heck, with Saylah it was like 10 months – I was putting her in timeout and talking to her about manners and respect, I am now starting that in full-force (as opposed to the “dabbling” I did in it last year) teaching Isaac ‘NOT to talk to Mommy and Daddy in that tone,’ ‘yes you do have to eat all of your food that I serve you’ and ‘no you cannot hit your sisters.’ Okay, we never let him hit, but he DOES hit. Typically it’s not in anger. Typically it’s because he is playing, gets worked up and wallop! Queue: ticked off sister tattling on brother. But we are in full swing of teaching him that WE are in charge … not him. And so far, I don’t think he’s convinced.
Speaking of hitting. I do have a super funny tale to tell … about a tail. Saylah’s in particular. Over break, Ben and I are sitting at the kitchen table after dinner, amused by our three kids chasing each other through the house, giggling up a storm. Back and forth they were going down and up our hallway into the family room. In zooms Audrey to the family room who throws herself facedown on the armchair. Bam, on top of her plops Saylah, keester up, face down on top of her sister. In gallops Isaac, who also propels himself on to Saylah. All three are laughing hysterically. Ben and I are smiling and I am personally loving how fun it is to watch my kids play together so sweetly. No sooner does that thought come out of my head then I see Isaac rear his head up, open his mouth and CRUNCH! take a bite out of Saylah’s backside. Yep, right on the right cheek.
She screamed – as anyone would who recently got bit on the butt might. Ben and I had to hide our laughs (because come on … that’s funny!). We did scold Isaac for it. (It’s simply not okay to bite your sister on the bootie.) But even Saylah admitted (after her bruise subsided) that it was a little funny.
So this week has been a rude awakening for him. He’s been forced to eat his whole dinner instead of part of it before getting dessert. He’s practically lived in timeout. And he’s even gotten a little swat on his diapered behind. To which, his little bottom lip protrudes and his face gets all crinkly and he cries. I really don’t care for this withdrawing thing of his because quite frankly my little heart cries too and all I want to do is scoop him up and kiss those sweet little crinkles. (I’ve become a softy).
I’ve also decided (because Jenn potty-trained her youngest this week) to add in potty training, despite all the people who tell me boys do it later. Has anyone else noticed all our brothers were potty trained the same age we were? Wish me luck. I’m sure I’ve bitten off more than I can chew! (no bun pun intended) ;)