Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Lost in the Sea of Parenting

Yup, that's right. I am lost.... and even feel like I might be drowning. With my experience as a preschool teacher (toddler age, 1-2) and being the oldest of my family, I thought I would have better control of things. I always envisioned having the "perfect child". One that doesn't talk back, one that picks up his toys, that can play quietly by himself or happily with others. HA! That dream is coming to a hault and I am lost on what to do.

For starters, discipline. I thought I had this planned before. Well, I guess not. I'm not much into spanking, unless it has been well deserved and my child is of the appropriate age. 16 months is not that age. Not for my child anyways. Aidan has been expressing his anger in ways that are getting on my nerves.

His favorite is to pick up whatever is closest and throw it when he is angry. Today, I wouldn't let him play with my camera. Instantly, he picked up the remote and my flip flop and chuked them both. This throwing things is on my last nerve. I stuck him in time out, for the first time. I explained that we do not throw things when we are mad. He SCREAMED the whole time. No biggie, I didn't expect him to enjoy it. He also continued to scream for a full 5 minutes afterwards.

I am beginning to wonder if he's ready for timeout. If not, then what else do I do? I am feeling SO incredibly lost on this. There are certain things I feel strongly that need to be nipped in the bud... NOW. Like this throwing things when he's angry. I just don't know if time out is the answer or what the answer might be if it isn't time out!

Moving on... structure. My child does not have much. I really hate to admit it but he pretty much does what he wants, when he wants. ALL of his toys are at his disposal, and they are all over my house 90% of the time. I have yet to teach him to pick up (which I always said I would start doing around 1). On top of that, how do I expect him to pick up the number of toys he has?

I see pictures of my friends kiddos and they are always playing with one toy at a time, whether it be their stacking cups or their blocks... etc. I don't know how to make the transition from unstructered chaos to a neat and orderly place where playtime is structured.

I am feeling totally lost. I feel like every expectation I had for the type of parent I was going to be and the child I was going to raise have gone down the drain. Now, here I am, lost in the sea of parenting.