A Little Patience

When we were in middle and high school, my sister was a big GNR fan. She had the posters, the tshirts, and even the torn-to-shreds Axl Rose-esque jeans. Although I was not as into their music as she was, I did have a special place in my puritanical Catholic school girl heart for "Sweet Child O' Mine" and "November Rain." (Does anyone know how Axl's stunning bride bit it in the "November Rain" video? That question has haunted me for the past 17 years.)

Turns out, I stood to gain a bit of wisdom from the lyrical genius of Axl and company.

Because lately? My patience with Isabella (already in short supply to begin with) is dwindling to just about nothing, and it doesn't help that my attitude coincides directly with some very undesirable Terrible Two-like behavior on her part.

I will say that it's not "Battle of the Hugely Pregnant, Stressed Out, Crabby Mother versus the Small, Whiny, Temper Tantrum-Throwing Toddler" every day of the week. Yesterday = good day. The previous three days? Not.Good.At.All.

Monday morning began with a Toenails-Being-Plucked-Out-One-By-One-Sized tantrum because the gallon of milk I took out of the fridge was "not right." The astute little demon child recognized that the label on the gallon of milk had indeed changed (since she turned two, she's been drinking 1% as opposed to whole milk). The label is now green instead of red, and she did not like this one bit. Mind you, she has been drinking 1% for almost two weeks now without ever noticing the taste difference, but one glimpse of that green label and she launched herself into a full-throttle fit, screaming "That's not right!" over, and over, and over. She finished her show by hurling her very full, very aluminum Sigg water bottle full of the "not right" milk across the room.

This behavior usually repeats itself at least 47 times a day lately. From refusing to want to get dressed in the morning, to hiding when I need to change her diaper and screaming when I pull her out, to stopping in her tracks and telling me, "I want to hold you" when I'm desperately trying to get her to climb up the stairs to our one and only bathroom because nature is calling (and loudly), and then crying hysterically when I tell her I can't haul her, myself, and her two in-utero siblings up 14 stairs.

When she has an outburst, I usually end up yelling too. And issuing multiple time-outs. I have reached my breaking point more than once in the last few weeks. It is not pretty parenting. I am not proud of my lack of patience or my unwillingness to spend time cajoling, bargaining, or begging her to do what I need her to do. She is so strong-willed, so obstinate, and so stubborn. The problem is, so am I.

I am so exhausted lately that it's getting depressing. I am usually a very high-energy, on-the-go person. I don't "relax." I don't take naps. I work when she sleeps and we stay very active during her waking hours. Until lately. I am tired and cranky and mourning the loss of my stamina. And I am taking it out on her.

Her behavior is typical and while highly f-ing annoying at times, it's expected for a two-year-old. My responses to her behavior aren't acceptable at all.

I want to spend these last two months before the twins arrive enjoying my little girl, whose life as she knows it is coming to an end. But she is so needy and so demanding, and I am so wiped out and impatient with her that things aren't turning out quite like I planned.

"All we need is just a little patience."

Sing it, Axl.

14 Responses to “A Little Patience”

  1. # Blogger Simply-Mel

    OH Kristi, man I feel for you. Faith was exactly like that, probably worse when I was preggers with Levi. Was so rough.

    Advice is meaningles cos I think you know the answers...its just the execution that is a bitch.

    Take it as easy as you can. Choose your battles carefully. Let things go every now and then. I also used to get my *strong-willed* knickers in a knot but sometimes it aint worth it.

    The milk incident? Oi. enough to turn me in a screaming meemy too - you are not alone!  

  2. # Blogger Mom24

    I agree I have nothing helpful to add. Except maybe that we all have times like that. It doesn't help you to change things, but maybe it can help a smidge to know you're not the only one.

    Try to be as good to yourself as you can the next two months--Isabella's not the only one who's life is changing.

    The yelling thing? I've so been there. It feels awful afterwards to feel like you've screwed up, but sometimes when those buttons get pushed...

    Is it possible to 'run' upstairs to the bathroom without her? It might be faster in the long run. If she's not the type of kid to get into things every minute, I think I'd try that. Good luck. {{{Hugs}}}  

  3. # Anonymous Ness

    This might sound strange, but I'm *so* glad someone else out there is having as stressful a day as me. God it makes me feel better to know I'm not alone!! yay for blogging!!

    Seriously? The one driving me nuts? Bizarrely, NOT the 3 yr old, but the 5mth old. He screams at the DROP OF A HAT. Usually right before I'm ready to totally lose it and start screaming myself. There's no middle ground with this kid, it's either totally happy smiling, gurgling, flirty cuteness, or EVIL DAMNATION I'M POSSESSED SCREAMING LIKE MY LIFE DEPENDS ON IT. Seriously. No kidding.

    And then I'm still trying to get some work done! LOL.

    Gosh, I really did LOL. I actually feel better now. Pffft. Or maybe it's just because he's finally dropped off to sleep....zzzzz  

  4. # Anonymous Lis Garrett

    I wish I had something helpful to contribute, but I don't. I guess I can only echo what everyone else has commented before me. Try to take as easy as you can, pick your battles wisely, and know you aren't alone.

    Hang in there . . . .

    PS - We still give Jacob and Bridget whole milk. Aside from Jake needing the extra fat and calories, even at almost 7 years old, I totally caved when he threw the same fit when he was Isabella's age. Oh, and I won't even tell you about the time I tried to switch him to soy milk. Not pretty. What is it with kids and their milk??  

  5. # Blogger Jesser

    We're not there yet, but I feel it approaching rapidly and I feel for you. Adding in a belly full of aches and exhaustion and I know I'd be the same way. It is HARD to have patience. Especially day after day. But you're right ... you do want to enjoy these last weeks as just the two of you. I have nothing helpful to add ... just commicerating. :( Good luck.  

  6. # Blogger Sasha

    I SO feel for you Kristi. I really do. I have been mulling over the same post in my head, wondering if I am the only mom who flips out on her child on a regular basis.

    It is SO hard dealing with these toddlers. Since I am in the trenches myself, I have little to offer beyond commiseration. But I do offer that. In spades. It is not easy.  

  7. # Blogger Sugar and Ice

    I can relate to the loss of patience. It happens to the best of us. Lila also frequently says "I want to hold you"...which really means she wants me to hold her. She really only says it when she's in trouble though.  

  8. # Anonymous Kris

    Oh yes are we there! And I'm not even pregnant, and technicaly Brody hasn't even hit 2 yet! It is such a challenging age, and after hours and hours of "challenging" it's hard to keep cool.

    Good luck with the next few months/ years. We're all there with you!  

  9. # Blogger Tracey

    Every parent's been there. Especially pregnant and having a toddler to care for. Sucks monkey balls.

    My only advice? Deep breathing. Repetitive statements for Isabella, without diverting, so that you are less inclined to get pulled into her tantrums. And? Someone to help. I sure as heck hope hubby can come home every night and take over. And that you can find a friend to babysit Isabella or arrange a playgroup with every week. Changing the scenery usually makes us happier.

    Hugs, honey.  

  10. # Blogger Pregnantly Plump

    So first, the model's name is Stephanie Seymour. I'm pretty sure she was a Victoria's Secret model.

    Second, I feel your pain and I'm not pregnant with twins and Little Elvis isn't two. We had a very similar instance to yours on Monday. Maybe that's how toddlers celebrate Labor Day? I couldn't do anything right for a while there.

    Third, this is a link to the other article that so infuriated me. http://www.more.com/more-women/real-women/leslee-unruh/
    It's the subject, not the reporting. The double standards of this woman's life make me so mad.
    So many double standards right now, last night's Daily Show made me feel much better about them.  

  11. # Blogger Damselfly

    I love to whistle the beginning of that song!

    It's amazing how astute Isabella is -- although you probably wish she wasn't so observant! It must be really hard to deal with two-year-old tantrums while pregnant.  

  12. # Blogger Damselfly

    PS I just gave you an award at my blog!  

  13. # Blogger Shannon

    while i'm not pregnant... today was a bad day for me b12 low so I was dragging on the floor tired, extremely sore from the gym, etc... so I lied on the couch and let Lorelei watch movies on Jeremy's computer... she pitched fits all day... but I just couldn't deal with it... so I watched Emeril Green for 4 hours today and ignored her lol... so I get a bad mommy award too...  

  14. # Blogger MsPrufrock

    Obviously you know I have such issues myself lately. Last weekend I thank god that my husband was around because I would have really shouted at P. Numerous times. I don't know how you do it - if I was pregnant (just with one, let alone two!) I'd just give up and lock myself in my room, so you're doing well!

    Perhaps you should also ask yourself, "What would Axl do?" Or, uh, perhaps not.  

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