Skip to main content

Sometimes you get the bear; sometimes the bear gets you

A former coworker (from when I taught) used to utter that phrase. Today, off and on, has been one of those days. Jordan has driven me crazy, and I know I am mostly to blame for this, as I struggle with discipline. Sometimes, when she is bad (and I hate to use that word), and I start to lose it, I end up saying things like I just want to run away or I ask her if she would prefer a different mommy or I tell her I am tired of her being so disrespectful.

I think you should not have such high expectations from your child that you think they will/should listen all the time. Kids test their limits, and I don't think kids are necessarily bad just because they want to do something they know they should not and they try to do it anyway. It is when you remind them that they should be not doing something or when they ask if they can do something and you say no, and they do it anyway or throw a fit, that can be problematic.

Some battles I don't bother fighting (or worse, I start to fight then give up). Today, for example, Jordan wanted to wear a ballerina dress. I said no, but she whined, so I gave in. I know I should have just let her wear it to begin with or I should have stuck to my guns. Once I let her wear it, she wanted to wear tights (in 80 degree weather). I said no, and she whined, and that went on for over five minutes. She was also mad that I insisted she wear shorts with her dress; she did not care that you could see her underwear. Probably 10 minutes after this battle begun, and after I had to brush my crying child's teeth, we left the house, with Jordan in her ballerina dress and shorts (no tights). For me, a small victory, but I know I am still losing the war.

Most of you are probably reading this and are horrified that I would let my kid get away with that (I have done worse, I am afraid). A few of you are perhaps nodding your head in sympathy. Sometimes I see other kids who are not well-behaved and wonder how or why the parents let their kids treat them that way. It is as if I temporarily develop memory loss and forget my kid sometimes acts similarly. Yet I know some parents who are guilty of doing the same. In fact, some of these people have gone so far as to point out something bad my kid just did or offer a way to handle it. I want to tell those people, "Ah, wasn't that just your kid last time who was hitting you and running away?" But I don't. I am all about keeping the peace.

Parenting is difficult. I knew that going in, which is a big part of why when a lot of my friends started having kids, I was not doing the same. I wanted to continue to live my selfish life and not worry about screwing up my kids, partly in fear I would treat them as I treated my dog Buster, whom I let get away with just about everything. With Buster, I reasoned he would live only about 10 to 12 years, so why not make his short life as happy as possible! Since it is one of my greatest hopes and prayers that my child will long outlive me, I know I really need a different tactic.

Tomorrow is another day. In fact, right now is a different moment, so here I try again.


Popular posts from this blog


Lately, I have had some anxiety. I have been waking up within an hour of when I fall asleep (partially because my bladder has its own timetable). And then I lie awake, worrying about various things. Mostly I worry that I am failing as a parent. I worry that I allow my child to be disrespectful to me more than she should. I worry that I am not forcing my shy child to do more things. And I worry that the few things I am pushing her to do will make her resent me. I worry that she gets stressed about school. I worry that she is bothered because she does not have a lot of friends. I worry because I don't know why that is.

I worry that we will be stuck in our house in our bad school district, a place where we would not send our child to high school when she graduates in two years (two years!). Then I worry that our somewhat introverted child will have to go to cyber school. Because there is just no way that we could afford to send her to Catholic high school, for which tuition is curren…

Why I am an "Other"

Last month while I was getting my driver's license picture taken, I tried to change my political party affiliation. For whatever reason, my choices were Democrat, Republican, Other, and None. But first, how I got there.

I registered as a Democrat when I first registered to vote, just before the '92 election. At that time, I was "kind of" liberal (for growing up in a somewhat rural area in western PA), and pretty much all of my relatives were registered that way, so it made sense. I was not really into politics at that young age, however.

As I got into my late 20s, I started to realize I was becoming more conservative, so a few years later, when it was time to renew my driver's license, I changed to Republican. I still remember the day at work when I told my coworker Anne that I was really a Republican. She told me she had known it for years. During the 2008 election, I was on board with John McCain running for president, mostly because I thought he was a good pe…

My first and hopefully my last biposy (or I would rather be at the beach)

This past Monday afternoon I had my biopsy. Up until Sunday night, I was not worried. In fact, I was never really concerned about having cancer; it was the needle part that bothered me. As it turns out, there is more than a needle; there is an actual incision. So it was not surprising that I only got a few hours of sleep. But on a positive note, I cruised right down the Parkway that morning, being the Monday before the 4th, so there was that.

I got there at the prescribed 30 minutes ahead of time; in fact, it was probably close to 35 minutes! I had to wait about 10 minutes, during which I could feel my seat vibrate (still not sure about that; I was tired but I don't think I was imaging it). Then I went back, changed, and waited in the "gowned waiting area" for no more than 5 minutes. Not even enough time to find out whose twins Jennifer Garner was pregnant with! WARNING: What follows will be detailed, though not too graphic.

Then I went back to a room, where someone as…