Friday, June 22, 2007

going with the flow

I have come a long way in the last few weeks in dealing with my frustration with Henry. I know that frustration is normal and that toddlers are inherently irrational but I know that my frustration was turning into anger and anger was coming through in my reactions to him. In some cases this may be okay but for the most part it wasn’t helpful and I ended up feeling really crappy. In part out of guilt for snapping at him but, even more so, the anger itself just made me feel bad. I realized and am continuing to realize that I can’t fight with him. We are all too strong-headed around here and it just doesn’t work. As Jason’s hilariously zen colleague told me, we have to flow with them. We being the adults and they being the kids that is. So, I am working on flowing with the situation and staying really calm and connected and I think we are all benefiting from it. I am still feeling frazzled and a little crazy but I feel like the relationship with each of my children is growing and improving a little every day, which really makes it all worthwhile.

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who knew?

This post is for the edification of anyone who searches the internet super highway for “white spots on teeth after dental work” or perhaps “dehydrated teeth.” Yes, that’s right, dehydrated teeth. I spent 2 hours and 45 minutes in a dental chair this morning (which wasn’t great but actually worked out ok and since it was a replacement of an existing restoration they didn’t charge me, which made it seem even better than it was), much of the time with a dental dam in my mouth leaving only 6 teeth exposed. When I got home and looked in the mirror I noticed the ends of those teeth had large very white areas on them, much like fluorosis spots. I wasn’t particularly worried but they had used so many different things in my mouth that I wondered if something could be amiss. So, I called my dentist’s office and asked the receptionist if she knew what this could be. Well, yes, she said she did. My teeth had been exposed so long without saliva that they were dehydrated. If the spots aren’t gone by early next week then call back and they may feel a bit sensitive to cold until they re-hydrate with saliva.

I was, and still am, a bit surprised and struck by this. Teeth can become dehydrated. I had the answer but was curious what the internet would have told me had I not just picked up the phone. I tried a number of searches and only found reference to fluorosis, mainly in children, and discussions about teeth whitening products. Apparently teeth whitening chemicals can also dehydrate teeth, which makes them look whiter temporarily and leaves them more sensitive. I did not find any mention of teeth becoming dehydrated and therefore getting white spots after exposure to air for longish periods of time. So, there you are, good people. Not to worry if dental work or any other long exposure of your teeth leaves them with white spots. They are simply lacking in needed saliva hydration and will return to normal shortly. Carry on.


Thursday, June 14, 2007

eight weeks old

In keeping with the standard paradox of parenting small children all day, the days drag on forever but the weeks have flown by. I can’t believe we are at the 8 week mark today. Mia is a pretty swell baby overall. Some of her tricks include smiling, sleeping for 5-7 hours straight (until the last two nights that is. Arg. This waking every couple of hours better not be the new standard.), grunting and snorting at nothing in particular, making all sorts of loud noises in her sleep to convince me she is awake, growing long eyelashes (that weren’t there at birth), breast feeding like a champion, gaining weight like crazy, and being generally adorable. She still spends long periods of the afternoon and evening awake. She is starting to sleep in the swing on occasion, which helps. People keep coming over and holding her for a few minutes until she falls asleep then declaring how very hard asleep she is (no offense people! I appreciate the efforts!). I smile and nod and then smile again when she opens her eyes wide 5 to 10 minutes later. Every time. Don’t get me wrong, I hope against all hopes that this is the time she really falls asleep for a real nap many times a day. I am optimistic but have been burned too many times to get too excited. Despite that business she is a sweet, calm, cute, fabulous baby. I can hardly wait to see how her personality develops. I feel like it’s an un-PC thing to say but I am absolutely loving having a baby girl.


mired in

In the umpteenth installment of toddlers are weird, Henry and I just had a five minute conversation about how we were going to go out and get a snack (“delicious!” he said) and go to a park. He suggested that we get hamburgers and french fries and mustard and strawberry milkshakes. He said he wanted to go to a park with lots of kids and slides and swings. While that wasn't exactly what I had planned, Mia has been on a sleep strike all afternoon and he took a short nap and I am feeling nuts so going on a drive and getting the hell out of the house sounds pretty good to me. So, I suggested we put some shorts on him and go (right after we talked about all of this at length and I pretty much agreed to all of his suggestions, whether or not I was going to follow through on all of them) and he looked at me with a sad, injured look in his eyes and said that he wanted to stay home with me and Mia. Oooookay. So, here we are. Still in the house. Thankfully, Mia just finally fell asleep in the swing to I didn’t have to push it. When Jason gets home I am so out of here (if only for a few minutes).

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Monday, June 11, 2007

save yourselves

This morning, shortly after 6am, Henry asked to climb into bed with us as he often does. We, in fact, encourage it because neither of us will get up with him to turn on cartoons before 6:30. So, he cuddles up with me as always for a few seconds before declaring, “those your boobs. They’re pokey!” I sort of laughed that yes they are big right now with mama milk for Mia. (The kid has me seriously engorged in the morning with the constant feeding in the evening then long sleep stretches at night. But I can’t really complain about that, can I?) He replied,” yeah! They are big and have mama milk. And they are pokey! And they poke people!” Maybe it’s a new superpower. If you are in the vicinity, consider yourself warned.


Thursday, June 07, 2007

another high point in parenting

If you leave your kid in pajamas all day long, at least you don't have to get him changed for bed.


Wednesday, June 06, 2007

on the brink of i don't know what

All I can think to ask of the universe at this moment is what is my fucking problem. I am seriously lacking in patience with Henry these days. I had seemingly limitless patience with him as a baby. It didn’t matter how long he cried or how insane things seemed or how tired I was. I, of course, bitched about rough nights, for example, after the fact but I never lost patience in the moment. He couldn’t help the situation. He was only doing what he knew how to do. It was my job to take care of him.

But now that he is a little person who understands what I am asking or telling him and does the opposite I just can’t use the same rationale. I know that he isn’t an adult, as much as he may seem like it sometimes, and that he is still guided by impulse but I just can’t deal. When he intentionally wakes up Mia and then screams at me when I reprimand him I can’t deal. When he yells in my face or bangs on something again and again after clear warnings I can’t deal. After I take the offending object away and he looks me in the eye with huge tears and whines and cries I can’t deal. When he whines and cries and demands the same thing an hour later I can’t deal. I want to reach out and grab him and do I don’t know what. I want to put him in his room and close the door and walk away.

Insert the usual disclaimer here about what a great kid he is most of the time but it doesn’t even matter. I tell myself that I would have more patience with him if it weren’t for juggling him and Mia but I am guessing he would make me nuts anyway. It’s just even harder this way. I could easily be delusional but I really don’t think it’s an issue of discipline either. We set boundaries, communicate them clearly, give warnings, use time outs and other appropriate consequences consistently. I try to pick my battles and let little things go and have fun with him. Usually it works but the handful of times throughout every day that he tests me and pushes me are making me feel truly insane. I hate yelling and losing my temper and getting angry and I especially hate doing it in front of/because of him. I know I’m setting a crappy example and probably setting us up for continued battles down the road but I don’t feel like I have the capacity for anything more right now. I feel like the answer is in myself but I can’t find it. Limitless patience and calm, where are you when I need you so badly this time?

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