Saturday, April 4, 2009


I never knew how much I would have to bend while being in my role as a mom. We all know about the sacrifices, but who knew they would be never-ending? My son is only six, and only just six so I am pretty new at this. But I'm old enough to be more patient with him than I would have been in my twenties or even my thirties but also old enough to want to be a bit selfish. Sometimes that's a tough combination for us.

This week was kind of turbulent. On my part I've been annoyed, frustrated and quite short of patience. I've noticed during the last year that as Riley changes and grows mentally and emotionally, he needs me to relate differently to him. Now is one of those times. I find myself floundering and self-critical. I check myself regularly for "am I turning into my mother?" syndrome. Riley will act as if I'm not there, as if I am mute. He makes it obvious that he's tired of me telling him what to do. But it's part of my M.O., I have to tell him what to do and since I'm alone in caring for him for the next little stretch of time, he's stuck with me. But one thing I've learned is that if I tweak my approach, accept the fact that he's exercising some of his own independence we usually get back on track pretty swiftly. But holy crap it sucks the life force out of me because I do demand a certain amount of manners and respect. I know I will be making these adjustments for a very long time to come, or I should say I am hopeful I will continue to see that what he needs from me will be changing constantly, at least until he really does, in fact, know more than me. These are the faces I've seen a lot of lately dubbed "Snarl" and "Snarl Revisited":

And here's the face I miss so much:


Snap said...

I love the fly-a-way hair on Riley! Hang in there ... respect and manners are sadly lacking in kids these days. You are doing the right thing. My granny really did say *go with the flow*!!! Let him be Riley, with manners!

Brenda said...

Ain't parenthood grand!! I feel my children have taught me a lot about myself. I just finished a parenting course 1-2-3 Magic, it was great. The books and DVDs are readily available, probably even from the library. Love those crocs!

Beth said...

When confronted with those snarly looks, I used to say (with a smile), “Don’t smile. Don’t you dare smile!” It worked about 80% of the time – the smile came.
I also did my share of apologizing for not recognizing emerging independence. Keep the guilt to a minimum – it’s a learning process for all.