Wednesday, January 31, 2007

28 Months

At this point of our lives Lucas has now become an important part of the decision making process. No longer does he wait for Mommy or Daddy to decided what is right for him. And if mommy or daddy simply don't want to hear the importance of what he has to say, well he can simply take matters into his own hand if necessary. It adds a new dimension to our parenting that, though we've always known this day would be upon us, weren't really expecting it already. The two-year-old suddenly has a mind of his own, which is probably why some parents tend to call this time of development the terrible twos. We're not ready to submit to defeat and admit that our precious child causes us serious psychological distress to the point that the word terrible enters our vocabulary when describing him. He definitely makes us aware that we are cruising through hyper-baby-space no longer, but with each challenge comes great new rewards, right?. That's the best way to approach obstacles I believe so we've opened our hearts and minds and arms to new possibilities, which hopefully shall include new grandparenting possibilities as well.

The grandparents spend plenty of time with the little guy and that has been a grateful pleasure over the past two years. Hardly ever do we hear a negative response with regard toward them spending more time with him and fortunately they live close enough to give us an immediate reprieve if necessary. Many times we're allowed a sigh of relief when we've come to our wits end and thoughts of terrible descriptions regarding our predicament begin to enter our minds. The day opens up before us childless and we're able to wallow in our intimate existence that, though it's changed dramatically, we still cherish deliciously. But with this little delight comes alternating challenges as well, like weeds sprouting up beside our wonderful flowers.

Our parents (the grandparents) seem to have forgotten the difficulty of trying to maintain a certain authority with a child of your own. There is a fine line between moments of serene camaraderie and complete disobedience. Trying to explain the importance of listening and respect to a two-year-old can be very difficult, especially if he has already decided how he feels about the subject. Well, this often becomes a glaring problem in the company of the grandparents. They don't hesitate to undermine any disciplining efforts and it almost always comes across as good natured. It's easy to understand because to them Lucas is a sweet little ball of wonder and they hate seeing him upset, but we're the ones who have to deal with the outcome of them giving into his every whim. They don't understand that he can't have everything that he wants all the time, that we are trying to set some limitations on him so that he won't grow up to be a complete asshole. I always hated those guys who seemed to have everything and especially that one thing that seemed to come right out of their forehead like a toad, their massive ego. We don't want Lucas to be one of those pricks. We want him to care and respect other human beings and it would be nice if our parents could understand that we are trying to begin some of that development now, which means that we don't acquiesce to whatever the hell he wants.

But, sometimes even that doesn't stop him. I've never been a big proponent of time-out. I remember the daunting parenting tool when it was thrust upon me and my bad behavior. When we started to learn a little bit about parenting it seemed like such a natural and normal behavioral technique that was accepted by everyone, but we never committed to it as a parenting tool. Besides we didn't want him to have to go to his room when he did something wrong. We didn't want it to be his bad place. His room is a special warm place where he sets up his train and plays and draws and reads. Well, recently Lucas has become a climber. We have chairs and little ladders and stools and many, many objects that can be used as a stool. Lucas has recognized the benefit of all of them. Now, it hardly matters that most of the objects above his normal height aren't for him, he's determined to investigate every corner of our small home. So, the time-out has gone into effect in our home. Every time Lucas uses the furniture to scramble beyond his means then he ends up in the back hallway right in the corner. We don't quite call it time-out but we all know what it means.

"It's time for you to think about what you are doing?"

The funny thing is that the more he goes in the corner, the less it seems to bother him. He's already becoming comfortable with his little space of punishment and we've only been trying it out for a couple of months now. Well, I guess we'll have to figure something else out soon enough as the evolution of parenting continues. You just keep growing Lucas and your mommy and I will do our best to guide you into the future...and please don't become one of those guys.

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