I wrote the following a couple of weeks ago and things are getting a bit better as we develop ways of accepting and helping Sam with all the big feelings he's feeling, but I will be honest and say that the cup of tea I'm about to have without him rampaging in the background is what I've been looking forward to all morning!
Sam is in a screamy shouty phase. I realised I have fallen into the trap of shouting back more often than I should. So I'm stopping because it makes no difference and upsets Leo too. I am at the stage where I feel like I'm missing a piece of the puzzle and must be letting him down somehow.
Sam is intelligent, and funny. He can be kind and thoughtful. He is strong and brave and wonderfully coordinated. He loves fiercely. I appreciate and cherish all of those things. But...
He is relentlessly loud and screams at me just about every time he needs to poop. He argues about every damn thing I say to him. He uses my furniture as gymnastic equipment and frequently knocks over his brother no matter how many times we talk about controlling his body and respecting other people's bodies.
He has developed a sense of entitlement over the TV and is downright unpleasant if I impose restrictions on what and how much he watches. He will either be completely helpful or without warning throw a massive tantrum because I ask him to pass me something.
I feel like the good stuff has nothing to do with the parenting I do and the bad stuff has everything to do with the long and painful struggle I had with making an attachment with him, when I couldn't seem to do anything about his sleeplessness and my crippling postnatal depression and anxiety.
I know this is all part of him being three. I know that this too shall pass. But as I write this, he is crushing against my belly singing a wordless tuneless song and repeatedly dropping a library book. Give mummy a break dude...