Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Discipline...again.

Well, let's see...after a rough week last week, we actually had a decent weekend. Jacob was manageable, which was all I could ask for after his issues last week. He had his moments, but like I always say, he's two. He played nicely and was reasonably pleasant despite having a bit of a crazy sleep schedule. He slept in a bit on Saturday (8am--lately that IS sleeping in), watched a movie on the way to Buffalo, had a bit of a rough lunch and fought his nap, but still did manage to take one. And by some miracle, he sat through an entire play Saturday night. We went to see "The Music Man" at St. Francis High School, Craig's alma mater. Jacob had a chance to run around the gym beforehand, then sat nicely for the entire first act. He was ready to run during the intermission, and got to play "basketball" with his cousins, then sat well for most of the second act before getting a little antsy but manageable near the end. He seemed to like the music and dancing a lot. Good to know, but I don't think we'll be trying that again soon. But it was so nice to be able to enjoy the show. It was a late night and it took him a while to fall asleep, but at least he was relatively sweet about it--pleasantly needy, I guess. He wanted me around but at least tried to fall asleep.

He slept until 8am again, though I wish it would have been later considering he had a late night and the time change to make up for. Still, he was relatively pleasant on a morning errand and while playing, but I got outvoted for naptime before Craig's mom's birthday dinner and we headed to that without a nap. Which meant NO nap. All day. None. Luckily he could run around like a maniac with his cousins in a kid-proofed house, and we could chat with the other adults without worrying much. He started to fall asleep during dinner but snapped out of it. But by the time we were leaving, he was beat and fell asleep as we headed down the road. At 7pm. Which in his brain was pretty much 6pm. Wow. He slept all the way home, woke up briefly upon arrival, and slept through. He did wake up about 7am, but fell back to sleep for nearly an hour. Nice.

After all that, I was hopeful we would have a good Monday. Alas, no such luck. I walked in to find Jacob sans shoes and socks. I knew that meant that he had been throwing them again, and sure enough, he threw one at a teacher. Then I found out that he punched a teacher in the face, unprovoked. Seriously?! He had a long note on the back of his daily sheet saying that they wanted to start doing a sticker chart to help manage his behavior. Today when I walked in, I looked at the sticker chart. All of his friends except one had stickers...and he had none. For all I know, that other kid wasn't even there today. Stickers appeared to be earned for listening, sitting, not throwing things, and sharing. Ugh. He gave me trouble again when I tried to put his coat on. I just don't know what to do. He knows when he's being naughty, as he won't answer questions about it when we ask, but doesn't seem to understand that it impacts other people, or even ultimately himself. He knows why his hockey sticks were taken away, but doesn't seem to grasp that he needs to be a good boy to get them back. This morning presented another example. Before leaving for daycare he was playing with his toys, and he refused to stop so we could leave. I warned him that if we didn't go right then, he would miss breakfast at daycare. He continued to play, but when we finally dragged him away and I told him we were going to be too late for breakfast (don't worry, I gave him a cereal bar to tide him over until his 9:30 snack--not ideal, but something), he got upset. I reminded him again that he needed to stop playing when I asked him so we could get to daycare on time, but he just got upset all over again. He's missing the key that there are consequences to actions--from timeouts to losing his hockey sticks, from missed breakfasts to no dessert. Even his issues with potty training--insisting he wants to wear big boy underwear but never telling us he has to go--seems to fall in line with this issue. He wants to have his cake and eat it too. He doesn't seem to care that he hurts people, and only seems affected by a raised voice about half the time. The other half of the time he laughs. Ugh.

I just don't know where we went wrong, or what we do to fix this. I'm not sure we can fix it. He may just have to grow out of it, but at what cost in the meantime? Will he really grow out of it, or will it get worse? Part of me wants to buy every book Jo Frost (aka the Supernanny) ever wrote, since a lot of Jacob's issues seem to be similar to things she's dealt with on her show. Just looked, and our library has them...and one is available! Might just have to stop there when I attempt to take Jacob for a haircut tomorrow. Hmmm. Even still, it's just getting to be too much. I worry that he's crying out for help, that he wants more time with us that we just can't give due to our work schedules. He's frequently asking to come into our bed, for example. I sometimes think his craziness at daycare pickup is just because he wants to show us things or play certain things with us now that we're there...but by now it seems like he should be used to the drill...so why isn't he? Sometimes I let my brain wander into possible medical causes--everything ranging from general sicknesses making him cranky or sleep deprivation to possible mental health issues. While it's doubtful, there are times when it seems like his behavior goes so far beyond the normal that nothing would surprise me.

It saddens me, and I just don't know what our next step is. Treading water and waiting to see what happens next is making me a little crazy at this point, and I just want to DO something. Something beyond just praying, that is. On the bright side, we'll both be around all weekend so we'll be able to see how he responds to attention from both of us all weekend while in our own house. So once again, we'll have to wait and see. But if his current cough and congestion doesn't clear up soon, we'll be back at the doctor's and you can bet I'll want to chat about this. It's getting to be too much.

In the meantime, tomorrow is another day...

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