Monday, April 13, 2015

Toddlers are HARD

Believe it or not, I actually had a completely different post written and scheduled to post today.
But I just finished ugly crying while trying to get Clayton (my 3 1/2 year old) to sleep.  I wasn't crying because getting him to sleep is least not any more. But Sundays have suddenly become that day of the week I dread. And I hate that. Sundays were so relaxing, full of spiritual uplift at church, finally having a child old enough to be entertained during sacrament meeting and obsessed with nursery. That all changed this year.
I don't frequently talk about my church on this blog, but those who have been "long-time readers" or instagram followers, will know that I am LDS or Mormon.  If you're unfamiliar with my religion, I encourage you to ask me questions or go: here.
At the beginning of this year I was pulled from being a teacher in the Relief Society to teaching Nursery, to teaching the 4 year-olds. Quite a big jump, and I honestly had to humble myself immensely to really enjoy and love teaching the little class of 4 year olds.
Also at the beginning of the year, Clayton was old enough to move from Nursery into his "big boy class" in Primary. And this is the thing that brings the anxiety to me every. single. sunday.
Clayton is very active and not used to sitting still, and as a toddler has a hard time just sitting and listening to someone teach without actively engaging him. The past few days I bribed him with a new Thomas the Train toy IF he behaved and stayed in his chair during Primary. I repeated this promise to him so many times it made my head spin. I tried this tactic because so many others haven't worked. (Serious talks, practicing at home, reminding all week, taking "rewards" away...)
We went into Primary I sat him in his class RIGHT in front of my class and he already lost it. He begged for his snack. Then he turned around and sat on his knees while eating his snack, he whined loudly, he sprawled across the chair next to him, he fell on the floor to whine. While we and his teachers are kindly talking to him to get him to sit on his bum. We took him out twice and on the second time he made his way outside with his dad I had to hold back tears.
"Is the the reason I got put in this calling, as punishment?"
"Why can't he just sit still for 15 minutes?"
"He behaves so well during Sacrament meeting!"
"Do they think I'm an awful parent?"
"What can I do to help him?"
Guys, toddlers are hard. I'm at my wit's end. As I laid him to bed tonight and he sweetly asked me for a cuddling, the emotions from earlier today rose up and I sobbed in the dark. Parenting is an absolute roller-coaster ride...feelings of such complete happiness with nights of feeling like the worst mother ever.
So I come to you. Please, I beg of you, give me some tips, tricks, advice! Thank you. And from the bottom of my crazy toddler-mother heart, thank you to Sunbeam teachers everywhere.

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