Short Of Patience
It’s been a while since I last blogged, transitioning into a new year had been pretty eventful for us. We moved to a new apartment, we’re settling in, and finding time for myself doesn’t seem as easy as before… I blame the size of the house, it requires double the time for cleaning and chores.
But most of all, I haven’t been feeling like a peaceful mom… not like how I really wished myself to be.
I mean, where has that patient nerve gone? I keep running out of patience and I wonder if I’ve changed? Or is it because that this is a phase that all parents go through when their kids turn 2.5 year old?
That frustration, that suffocation, that head banging sensation every time Noemi screams and shouts and yells… all I wanted, was for it all to stop.
Whenever she does those things, I raise my voice to assert my authority. The more I do that, the more I see her raise her voice too. It’s not working. She simply mirrors my actions.
Just the other day, while she was ‘helping’ me in the kitchen, she threw a big bowl of water over herself and onto the floor.
Me: Noemi, why did you do that? Look! You’re all wet!
Me: What are you going to wear now? All of your clothes are in the washing machine, and I don’t have anything for you to change into!
Noemi: …don’t angry? *tilted her head, voice cracked*
Me: I’m upset because I don’t know what to do!
Noemi: …don’t upset. Don’t upset.
Me: Stay there and don’t move. *I went to take the laundry out to dry*
I took my very limited time to get away from it, to try and gather myself. When I saw her trying to walk away from the kitchen, I went back in.
Me: Don’t go anywhere because if you go to your pillow, the pillow will get wet, if you go to the sofa, the sofa will be wet.
Noemi: … don’t angry.
I took a deep breath and lower myself with my arms open. She walked towards me and came in for a hug.
Me: I’m sorry that I’m angry and upset. It’s because if I let you wear your wet clothes, I worry that you might fall sick, but if I remove your clothes, I worry you might fall sick too, because there’s nothing to wear and the weather is cold.
Noemi: *Looked at me*
Me: *I hugged her and took a deep breath…* Let’s go and see what we can find for you to change into ok… (even when I was convinced that there was nothing to wear.)
Noemi: Mm. *nods*
I took her hand and went to the closet. Found a pair of trousers that was to be returned to her friend, and put it on her instead. Guess I could delay the return…
But when things don’t get her way, she goes into this full on crying mode that she cries with all of her energy, even when she wasn’t really crying. You know, the fake crying? The I-don’t-care-I-just-want-to-cry-even-when-I’m-not-really-crying-because-all-I-care-is-to-eat-your-brain kind of cry.
I lose myself over that kind of cry easily, I later talk about my reaction and apologize for it. She always seems so forgiving and understanding.
Today, I decided that I would tell her I needed to be by myself when she went into her full on crying mode. She followed me, and I couldn’t get away from her crying. I figured she felt punished or abandoned in a way.
So when she did it again a couple of minutes later, I picked her up, and said
"I see how upset you are, so I’m going to take you to the room, there are plenty of pillows you can stay with, and when you’re ready you can come out ok? Because when you cry, I get nervous, and when I get nervous I scream and shout and use rude voice. I don’t want to do that, so please stay here in bed with pillows, and when you’re ready, I’ll be in the kitchen. I won’t close the door, so you can come to me, ok?"
She took a pillow, looked at me and nodded as I placed her in bed. I leaned in for a kiss and told her I love her. She gave me her full on pout for the kiss. She understood what I was saying.
There were times like this that I felt like I managed to gather myself in some ways, even though small.
Every stage she goes through in her childhood triggers something that was done in mine. It takes so much more than just to parent my daughter… through raising Noemi, I am finding ways to readjust my emotional alignments.
宝贝 (Baby), I know how hard it is for you to be growing up, to go through a stage that you do not know what to do with all those internal impulses that storm at you. I am also trying to manage my impulses triggered by yours… Know that I am far from perfect, but I’m trying my best… and I love you, even when you are
eating my brains going through hard times.