Wednesday, June 6, 2007

the secret of the terrible two’s

Julianna has officially learned to test me and misbehave. She has been a royal pain in the patooty ever since Sunday. At first I thought it was because our trip to the beach was rough on Sunday when we screwed up her schedule, but now I think it's just that she's learning to control whatever situation she may be in and she's trying to become more independent. I do know for certain that she is testing me and pushing my patience.

She's started screaming whenever she wants something instead of signing for it like she usually does. I've tried encouraging her to sign again and prompting her by asking questions like, "you want to eat this hot dog?" but it doesn't help much. She is also protesting loudly anything she doesn't want such as diaper changes, car seats, high chairs, etc more violently than she ever has. She runs away from me in stores, out on the beach, and all through the condo. She also throws things across the room and I cannot exaggerate enough the extreme messiness she's adopted in her eating habits - smearing banana in her hair, throwing food on the floor, and mashing peas with her fingers. She's never been too much of a messy eater and now she is clearly doing this because it invokes emotion and reaction from me.

Last night I was feeling really down from the stress of having to deal with her on my own over the past couple of days. I've heard so much about the "terrible two's" and never known what to believe - everything from "it wasn't that bad" to "they start around 18 months and last until 36 months" to "it's all a part of growing up and it's what you make of it." Well, Julianna is only 14 1/2 months old but I can already tell a huge difference in her behavior.

I know that I feel a lot of pressure from myself. I feel like my actions in response to her are so important. I know that the way we treat her now sets the stage for discipline later and I don't want her to be like so many other children you see misbehaving everywhere else. That's why she's been bothering me so much the past few days. I just want to do what's best for her in the long run.

Thank God, I woke up feeling much more positive and energized this morning. Jonathan will be here to help with her tonight and we'll be able to have a somewhat decent vacation. I'm sure my attitude adjustment will help when dealing with Julianna today. I want to be able to enjoy the fun things that she's experiencing now in addition to being able to deal with the challenges she presents me with as well.

So any advice from anyone? What's your take on the big secret of the terrible two's?

1 comment:

Nanna said...

I am sure you will make the right decisions for Julianna. She is just testing you to see what kind of reaction she can get and if it's an excited one, she will keep it up! Just love her like you always have and I know she will turn out as sweet as her mom.

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