Monday, March 09, 2009

Threats: take 2

I learn again and again how hard it is to bite my tongue at the peak of frustration and not hurl empty threats into the air like: "SO HELP ME SILAS! if you don't get your pants on RIGHT NOW you will NEVER leave this house again!! " (when on earth did I start saying "so help me,"?) I have been trying to curb these outbursts and instead say things that actually have meaning, to motivate with positive reinforcement, to redirect. But all of this is very hard.

I wrote about a low point in my threatening career when Silas was at the peak of I'm-2-and-have-a-new-baby-sister. Today I hit another low point when talking to Eden. Fortunately, she still isn't fluent in English, and I'm pretty sure she was unmoved.

It became clear as of 20 minutes ago, that I am weening Eden today. She has nipped me a couple of times as babies do, I've screamed, she's frowned the biggest frown, burst into tears in slow motion, and then finished nursing. But today, she rounded a corner and became an all-out repeat-offender biter. So nursing is done. Especially since after she bit me the fourth time, I yelled again and inadvertently whacked her little diapered bottom. And then laughed. I am not a spanker, but I can see how biting could drive me to it.

Anyway, once it became clear there would be no nursing today, I frowned at Eden, carried her downstairs, put her on the floor, grabbed a bag of frozen milk from the freezer, frowned again, saw that Eden looked concerned, flashed her a huge smile, thawed the milk, made a bottle and took her back upstairs.

I should add that the child has hardly eaten today, went to Disneyland (talk about sensory overload) AND missed her nap -- I expected her to gobble the bottle and instantly pass out -- and I really hoped she'd do both.

Instead, she bit the bottle, pulled it out of her mouth, looked at it, squirmed, wiggled, twisted, did back bends toward the window. I re-situated her, turned her around, said things like Come on, Eden... Here you go, Eden... Open your MOUTH, Eden... Come ON, Eden!... Put this BACK IN YOUR MOUTH, Eden!... COME ON!... And then -- EDEN!... YOU ARE NEVER GOING TO DRINK MILK AGAIN IF YOU KEEP ACTING LIKE SUCH A MAD WOMAN!

Sitting at the kitchen table an hour later, the house is FINALLY quiet. After talking and crying and yelling in her bed, sitting up and shaking the bars like a little trapped zoo monkey, Eden is asleep. Whew. And I think I will give her milk again later. And maybe even some oatmeal.

1 comment:

Dave, Hailey and Chase said...

Great post - made me laugh! I too caught myself saying those exact same words the other day when Chase decided looking out the window bending out of my arms was far more entertaining than his bottle. Drives me batty!