Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Light Bulb

After two days-- a total of seven hours-- state testing is over for my home schoolers!   Yay!

The sad thing for them is that they have regular school days for the rest of the week.  We all sort of thought this whole week was going to be consumed with testing making our work load lighter.  Oh well, just a few more weeks till school is out for them anyway.

I am definitely enrolling Paul into homeschool for next year.  He is very excited.  "Can I have this cubby?"  Paul pointed out.  I am excited to see firsthand the progress he is going to make!

Dennis is going through a tantrum stage where he screams!  It is so uncalled for, but aren't all tantrums.  The smallest thing will set him off.

The wrong cup.
The wrong breakfast.
Me saying no to him wearing shorts.
Me saying no to him wearing pants.
Me picking out the wrong shirt.
Me choosing to pick out his clothes before Alex's.
Alex beating him downstairs first.  Figure that one out.
Alex sitting in his spot.  And we don't even have spots.

Though this stage is wearing me down right now, I trust that it is a stage.  I see the independence in him pushing to get out.  He wants to open his oatmeal packet.  He wants to use the stool to get his cup.  He wants to pass out the dinosaur vitamins.

And this morning he insisted on buttoning his jeans.  Yes, that turkey buttoned his own jeans this morning.  Now don't think that by me calling him a turkey, I think his behavior is cute because I most certainly do not.  But what I am saying is that I think this is problem that I can't expect him to fix on his own.  For so long Dennis needed me in a big way.  He was weak, and fragile, and couldn't do any of the things I mentioned.  I/We grew into the routine of doing everything for him.

Fast forward one year.  Dennis has blossomed.  And I mean really blossomed.
Now we have Mr. Tank.  Mr. Independent.  Mr. I Can Do It By Myself.

And I am stuck in "He is still me baby" mode.
And he doesn't like it very much.  And yet he still needs us.  What five year old doesn't need help.
And so finding the balance has been challenging.  And Dennis is expressing himself the best way he knows how.

**Light bulb** It just seriously went on.

I am going to try talking him through a tantrum to see if he can tell me using his words how he feels.  His ability to speak in complete sentences is absolutely amazing but I usually don't even give him the chance when he is screaming and crying and carrying on like he does.

Oh how I hope this might help!  I'll keep you posted.
In other news, you can read our most recent exciting news here.


  1. We were going through this wit Aidan last Christmas. So, he and I sat down and wrote out a list of things that Aidan could do and a list that Aidan needed Mama's help with. It worked--mostly. He now picks out his clothes the night before and is expected to dress himself after I wake him up in the morning. . one small example. Might work? I think our boys are about the same age. . . Go Bless!!

  2. Dennis sounds like my almost 4 year old - who is a bit stubborn. I've talked in depth with our Pediatrician about his behaviors. He throws a HUGE fit if he wanted to open the door to the house and I did it instead. He won't be happy unless he goes back outside and does it. Little things like this all the time. His Pediatrician recommended that we read a book called, "Raising Your Spirited Child". It describes him to a T! My son also has some developmental issues (communicates on a 2 year old level - complete 180 from last year when he didn't even talk, isn't yet potty trained - possibly due to IBS). He also has some sensory issues, especially with noise. It's a great book for the parents and gives some great advise. Just thought I would share with you too.

  3. Don't you love those light bulbs when they finally click on?

    I have the same sorts of problems with my guy - especially if someone "wins" over him at anything. We knew from the get go that our little guy is running about a year behind his age, and always will be, because of the neglect his first two years.

    There are a lot of times I still struggle to know the cut off line between babying him and letting him do for himself. It's hard to know. "Use your words" has become a main phrase around our house for just that reason - which serves as much of a reminder for me to sit and listen as for Shorty to use his words!

    Sorry, but I actually feel a little bit better after reading this post - if you have these sorts of troubles and realizations, then I'm not as far off base as I feared! :)

  4. Hi Christine,

    My other thought is that Dennis might be reacting to your upcoming absence, his loss of the role of baby in the family and other anxieties about the upcoming adoption.


  5. I understand the point of your post about Dennis but I'm honestly confused about why you don't want him to button his jeans. Not trying to be difficult at all; I just didn't get that part. I've got spirited kids too and know how trying it can be!

  6. Christine, I hear now 4 yr old went thru this but at 2...Tantrums for was very stressful and dificult....and yes IT was a stage and it did get better...but it took time and while it was happening it was very very hard to deal with everyday over everything....for a time we did not go anwyhere with was horrible....Hang in there.....It IS a stage....just praying for you it goes away sooner then later....
    HUgs, Gina

  7. I agree with the commenter who said she has adopted the phrase "Use your words!". Its a great reminder to help him communicate his frustrations in a more productive way. In his struggle for independence, why not try providing Dennis with more choices. Eg. Do yo want to wear this blue shirt or this yellow shirt? Mama is still in control as you provide the two items for him to choose from, but then he feels as if he is asserting his independence when he makes the final decision between the two. Same goes for chairs or whatever!

  8. I agree with Terri-Anne, after many battles, we offer as many choices to our boy as possible. Now that he is learning to get dressed and do some other things for himself, we need to budget much more time. I also have adopted the position of: "You can try it for a minute while I do this, but then I will help you. You can try again tomorrow."


I find your comments so inspiring! Thanks for visiting our family blog, and sharing your thoughts.