Thursday, April 1, 2010

The Class Bully and Other Random Stuff

So....yeah. Jacob is the class bully. Yep, that skinny little kid has been tormenting his classmates, apparently. Yesterday he made several biting attempts and sometimes out of nowhere will run up and pummel a kid, in the words of one of his teachers. I must admit, I'm a bit stumped. Yes, he can be difficult and defiant, particularly lately. But he can also be the sweetest kid, giving kisses, making his stuffed animals kiss, feeding them, hugging, laughing, playing sports...so I'm just not sure where the bi-polarness comes in. I know, he's almost two and the terrible twos may be making their appearance. That's just how kids are. And to some degree biting is normal at that age. But why is my sweet little boy such a disaster right now? Is it the move? Is it the age? Is it bad parenting? A combination of them all? I know that he's probably frustrated that he can't fully communicate himself right now. He's getting better with talking but he tends to whine a lot when he can't say exactly what he wants, and I'm sure that some of his physical responses tend to be for a similar reason. Even still, I don't like that when I tell him "no", that he turns, looks at me, smiles, and does it again. I don't like that every attempt to put on his coat or hold his hand to walk somewhere results in him shimmying out of my arms or turning into a rag doll or going stiff as a board. It gets so frustrating to deal with after a while, and now that it's affecting other people, it really bothers me. No matter how stern the "no" when he hits or tries to bite, it doesn't seem to impact him. Spanking and hand slaps are a tough call, because they obviously can't use that form of punishment at day care, and although a good dose of fear isn't a bad thing, I'm not sure that hitting is the best way to punish a hitter, at least not before they understand that it's only acceptable for Mommy or Daddy to do that (though that sounds wrong just typing it, but you know what I mean). I don't know what he needs, though I'm doing my best to be available for him, to play with him, and to make things as much back to normal as possible, even though there's still so much going on with our move and the aftermath. I have no idea if the move really got all this going, or if he'd be doing the same thing back at the old house, too, just because of whatever phase he's entered into. I know that I didn't give him the attention he probably needed during the move itself (not that I didn't have other people around trying to make up for it, but you know, no one else is Mommy!), and I feel so badly about that. And this week hasn't been easy either, trying to do what I can for Jacob while staring at the boxes that need unpacking and knowing that they're probably a safety hazard if we're not watching and a barrier to Jacob having a nice, big play area. Hopefully we can ease him back into good behavior with some extra attention and a continued eye toward discipline.

In other news, let me just say that I firmly stand by what I said at the beginning of this moving process--that I did not want to do it while pregnant. That's why we did this sooner rather than later, so that we could get it over with before we got much closer to an attempt at baby #2. I have been so exhausted throughout this process that I can't even imagine doing it with even less energy. My body aches, I'm ready to sleep by 10pm (or earlier), I'm falling asleep at my desk, and yet I've been going to bed no later than I used to. I can't even fathom how I'd be feeling pregnant. Not to mention that I would never want to expose my unborn child to all of the stress that's gone along with this process. I think the stress has had a major impact on me, because I just don't think that the physical activity alone can account for all these other symptoms. It's been quite the process and I think my brain and body both need a rest. Hopefully soon, but no, not quite yet. I will not rest until all of the boxes have a home!

Jacob and I are off to NT for the weekend starting tomorrow, and Craig has a couple games to get through before joining us on Sunday. We're going up primarily for the Binkley family tradition of Prunes & Noodles on Good Friday, which is better than it sounds. It should be fun, though I know I'll be thinking about the house all weekend. I'm not sure if the change of scenery will be good for Jacob or if it will only add to his confusion and frustration. Let's hope it's the first option. I hope to find a couple fun Easter-y activities for Jacob, but if nothing else we do have his Easter basket to look forward to. Hopefully I'll get some fun pictures to share soon. Have a very Happy Easter, everyone!

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