July 24, 2012

Dear Bennett, months 32, 33 & 34

Dear Ben,

I'm sorry it's been so long since I've written a letter . . . I've been busy.  Doing laundry.  And I'd say half of our family's laundry is YOURS.  You are the dirtiest little boy I've ever seen.  You like to play hard and you aren't afraid to get messy.  All of your summer t-shirts are stained, and the bathtub looks like a mud puddle after we get you cleaned off at night.  You always have sand between your toes.  And fingers.  And usually in your hair, too.  You're all boy.

Your independence has become both endearing and frustrating.  Your most common phrase is "I DO THAT ALL MY FELF!"  You don't like unsolicited help from other people.  I try to give you your space as much as I can.  You don't like to hold my hand ever . . . especially in parking lots.  Often if I tell you NOT to do something, you just stare me down and I can almost hear you wondering whether or not doing it will be worth the consequense.

Last night, we were in the car and you were especially ornery.  Perhaps because of the 10 empty peanut butter cup wrappers I found in your bed during nap time.  Or maybe because we had you out too late.  In any case, you were testing my patience and your limits.  You had your cup of water from the restaurant we were leaving and you took the lid off.  I told you to put the cup in your cup holder and put the lid back on the cup.  You looked at me, and with a perfectly straight face you tipped the cup upside down all over the seat and floor of the car.  So, I channeled my remarkable parenting skills and began yelling at you. 

I yelled.  And you threw the cup.  And I yelled more. And you continued to throw everything that was within your reach.

Not my finest parenting moment.  Not exactly a shining moment for you, either.

When these things happen, I always worry that you're "acting out" against something . . . like us not giving you enough attention.  Or that we've steered you wrong somehow.  But I think it's just the terrible twos. I think these are just exercises for your dad and I in patience and consistency.

Much to your dismay, you went to bed as soon as we got home.  You hugged me and told me how much you love me and I told you how much I love you.  All was right with the world again.  I hope that no matter what happens over the course of your life, that you'll always know that.  No matter what you do, or how much you throw at me, I'll always love you.


1 comment:

Sarah said...

Oh Sara.....this resonates with me. Months 34, 35, & 36 (mostly 35 & 36) have been SO hard!! And I was NOT prepared for it or expecting it. I never felt like I had a terrible two. Just a terrible ALMOST 3. And honestly, since the day of his b'day, we've had just good days....I'm hoping that it lasts :) But there has been too much blatant disobedience on the part of the almost (now) 3 year old, and WAY too much yelling on the part of the parent at at the end of her rope. And then LOTS of mommy-guilt. It's amazing how these kids are so forgiving and loving though. When I tell him I love him so so much, and "no matter what", and apologize for yelling, and explain that I love him even when he makes poor choices, he believes me and accepts it! And then gives me hugs and showers me with kisses and tells me "it's okay Mommy." In these moments I'm so scared that I'm scarring him for life. I hope not, but I wish there were a way to make my scarey yelling voice to go away and never ever come back!!, even when I'm frustrated! (Being the parent of 2 boys, if you have any tips, let me know!!!! :))