.. This one is my new mantra with the kid. I’ve reluctantly accepted he’s at the stage of many new feelings and very little clue of how to handle them. So lately I hear myself saying all too often “talk to me baby, tell mummy how you’re feeling”.
So after the 3rd consecutive day of his teacher giving me a story about him being “naughty” when I picked him up after school, I accepted that my kid is just like me. I am easily one of the most passive aggressive people you will ever meet. A skill honed over many years of learning how to make not-so-subtle jabs right to the jugular of anyone crossing my path at the wrong time. A skill it took me a long time to accept, and as an adult, to curb. I’m still not there yet, but I’ve at least learned to recognize what has become reflex and dial it back, particularly when dealing with those I care about.
He’s not quite at the passive part yet. In listening to his teacher’s stories and seeing his head hung in shame as she spoke softly and hugged him, I have to take responsibility for my behaviour and how it manifests in him. I’ve been pissed off a lot lately, about everything. The very next morning when still trying to figure out how to approach it, I’m talking with his teacher about an upcoming event and hear a commotion in the classroom. I turn to see my child have another boy in a headlock. *cue my “have you lost your mind, child?!” reaction*
It turns out they were packing up toys to prepare for the day, and this little boy wouldn’t hand over the toy he had so it could go back into the toy box. Seems like an over reaction to something simple, right? Like me, he likes order. Like me, it’s easier to do it yourself than to have someone else muck it up. *sigh* One playtime detention later, I asked him how he was feeling. “I was feeling mad, mummy”…
OK. It’s a start. Accepting he is my child and appreciates routine, I tried to start a new one. So far it’s been interesting, but seems to be helping us both. Every day we sit with each other and talk about our day – what made us happy, sad, mad, all the feelings. More importantly we talk about what we did when we were having all those feelings. We talk about the things we did, even when we didn’t want to do them. Getting out of bed seems to be on both our lists – so now we sing and dance with each other in the morning during breakfast and while we’re getting ready to go to school/work.
It’s the little things. Here’s to hoping we both grow from it. Most of all, I hope he understands that it’s OK to feel, to talk about how he feels, and how to not hurt others when he’s hurt. Hoping we both understand.
Being 5 sure is rough.