Both of my children are firmly planted in developmental stages where they trying to assert their independence. And it makes for the perfect storm drama around our house lately.
Bink’s “terrible two’s” don’t feel so bad most days. There are definitely times, like this morning, when he’s clearly woken up on the wrong side of the race car bed. There are also definitely times when no matter what I do, I can’t make him happy (I want a squeeeeeeeze-y fruit! Plea! PUH-LEA!…except we don’t have any in the house).
I can handle toddler huffing and puffing. I can handle throwing matchbox cars and timeouts on the stairs and the fake sobs for attention. I can even handle showing up to pick up Bink from daycare to have him “Go away, Mommy” because he wanted to keep playing in the sandbox.
I can put up with all that because most of the time, Bink is a pretty great kid to be around. He’s sweet and smart and kind and funny. He just also happens to be stubborn and adventurous and convinced he’s invincible.
I’m having a much harder time dealing with tween drama. The sighs, the eye rolls, the slammed doors, the obvious “I’m not listening anymore” looks. The past few months, since starting sixth grade, have been hard on all of us. This transition into middle school is a big one. It’s a transition full of social anxiety, bigger responsibilities, more expectations for maturity, and just flat-out harder work to do with no one looking over your shoulder to make sure it is getting done.
And K is sinking.
She isn’t doing well academically. She isn’t making friends. And she isn’t talking to Hubby and I about it. I went from having a child that wouldn’t stop following me around to talk so one that answers questions with one word (normally “fine”). And I don’t know how to help her.
She’s started seeing a counselor again. Hubby and I spend hours sitting with her each to make sure homework is getting done, her binder is organized, and papers are signed as they come home.
But, I’m mostly just exhausted by it. And overwhelmed. And frustrated. And a big ball of pregnancy hormones.
It’s just so much harder to stomach the same level of drama from tweens because its not even like she’s pleasant to be around most days. There is no most of the time she’s great right now. Most of the time she’s kind of a terror. When she’s not I’m constantly waiting for the other shoe to drop instead of enjoying the 15 minutes of reprieve.
I would rather handle a hundred toddler meltdowns than any more of this tween attitude crap.
And I’m terrified of adding a third child to the mix when I barely feel like I can devote enough attention to these two.
And, there. I feel a little better after admitting that to the world. Time to go put my big-girl pants on, figure out what else we can be doing, and make some phone calls.