Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Keeping it in perspective

The past couple weeks have been very rough. Diva, as much as I love her, has been wearing me down. There is a reason her nickname is Diva. Now I know a lot of 3 year-olds can be demanding but I feel like she is on the extreme end of the spectrum. I spend most of my days battling with her, being frustrated and/or angry with her. It's exhausting to say the least. I don't want to be like that.

Every morning I try my absolutely hardest to put on my best smile and greet her with utmost enthusiasm and love. Nine times out of ten she responds with a growl or shouting accompanied with her perfected scowl. Breakfast is usually shouts of, "No oatmeal...CHEERCHOS! GIMME IT RIGHT NOW!" Lunch and dinner are no better.

When Lil' Sis' is asleep I sit down with her and give her suggestions on what we should do:

"Would you like me to read you stories?"
"Do you want to paint?"
"Do you want to draw?"
and so on.

I seriously ask myself, "Why is she so angry all the time? I must be a terrible mother. What have I done wrong?"

Then I leave her with other people and I hear how polite and sweet she was. Really? Great. That makes me feel worse.

The last week especially I just felt emotionally drained. I know Diva is exhausted too and it greatly contributes to her attitude. Simple answer? She needs more sleep. Oh but did I mention the girl abhors bedtime? Ya. Like so much so that come 8 pm she magically turns into a sweet, cute little girl. The nicer she is, the later she can stay up. I like my 8 o'clock Diva. It's a side of her that I rarely get to see during the day.

So, as not to sound like a Debbie Downer this post has a "happy ending." After much prayer and changing a few things here and there, Diva has been acting a little better. Not a complete transformation but better. I know that dwelling on the negative will get me nowhere. Focusing on the positive things is what makes life "livable" and more enjoyable.

Last night she was completely overcome with excitement at the thought of sleeping in a tent with Daddy. It warmed my heart.

She's growing up so fast. It freaks me out a little.

Today she came to me, hugged me tight and said, "I love you Mommy."

Totally worth it.


Cindy said...

kay what the heck happened to her?! I've only been gone a week and a half and she looks like she is about a year older. Tell her to stop! Those pictures are adorable and I CAN NOT wait to see her on Friday! I miss her so, so much.

Lindsay said...

Oh, I'm sorry it's been rough. She is a strong-willed one and the demands sure can take a toll on you. Tucker behaves the worst with me, too, but I heard/read somewhere that kids do that because they feel most comfortable with you and they can just let themselves be who they need to be. Plus she probably knows you'll love her no matter how she acts. So maybe you should be flattered??
Too bad we can't swap kids for a week or so.

Oh, and weren't you told that age three is worse than two? I definitely thought so. Four is a little better.

debora said...

"Debbie Downer"? uh, gee thanks Carl.
We all adore Cadence, moodiness and all. She has so much personality. She completely holds her own when she is here playing with her 8 and 11 year old uncles and all their friends.

The Salvesens said...

Seriously, she looks about 5 years old in those pictures! How is she growing up so fast?! Sorry to hear she's being so difficult. If I could, I would take her off your hands...forever! Hope things get better. She's a cute girl, that everyone in the whole world adores! Maybe we should try some hypno therapy or something :)

Lindsay said...

Mom, "Debbie Downer" is a saying--and you're not always the Debbie.

(I actually did not know this until I saw someone completely unrelated to us use it.)

Danielle said...

LOL to your mom thinking you were talking about her. That's something my mom would think. Gotta love SNL, eh?

Cute story Carly. I find that I have to remind myself OFTEN to not focus on the negative things and just let the happy parts of the day consume me. That makes for a much happier me.

Hey our blog is going private again. If you want an invite let me know, I just need your email addy. You can email me or leave a comment on our {currently non-private) blog.

~ Danielle

debora said...

Okay girls, of course I know that "Debbie Downer" was meant in a generic way, I have watched SNL a few times in my life, but I still don't like it.
BTW I hate to tell you that some days kids of all ages can make you crazy insane. Ah sweet summertime. :O

Lindsay said...

Oh sorry Mom. It's hard to read sarcasm in a comment. I rarely watch SNL (way past my bedtime) so I guess I'm the foolish one here.

The Wifey said...

Actually Mom in my post I was specifically talking about you. You're so depressing all the time you know. It just fits.

KIDDING. I figured you were being sarcastic.

The Erickson's said...

What is up with that last picture??? She looks like she's six! I have got to get out there to see her before I blink and she turns 16 on me!

Sorry she's been such a hand full lately. She is definitely strong willed and full of personality. I love that girl! I am in no place to give parenting advice on how to raise a three year old. So I'm not even going to try. I hope things continue getting better!

Briana said...

I can definitely relate to terrible 3s. When everything is falling apart... we go for a walk, it always puts the boys back into positive moods. I pray a lot too, especially at bed time. I like your idea of no-poo. I will try it. Thanks for all the great info.

Danielle said...

Okay now I'm laughing again at your mom's {new} comment. I didn't pick up on her initial sarcasm either (but I'm sure the fact that I know NONE of you played a part in it...)

Carly - your family is so cute and your mom apparently has a rockin sense of humor! =)

Amanda Howell said...

I just read your post and I can sympathize. Raising my Gracie has been a similar adventure in parenting. You are amazing and raising an adorable strong willed young lady. From what I can tell you are exactly what she needs and Heavenly Father knew exactly what he was doing when he sent her to you. I have learned to absolutely love Gracie's strength (despite how she wears me out) and hopefully we can both help these girls use their strength for good and not evil.


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