NaBloPoMo Day 12

There's no prompt for today, so I'm going to complain about my wonderful, awesome, impossible children.

My kids have been wild animals this week. I don't know if it's the time change, the full moon, the fact that they were up late a few nights in a row, or what, but they have not been pleasant the past couple of days. Nora has been cranky and whiny and full of attitude. Isaac has been disobedient and screamy and mimicking Nora's bad attitude. Holy hell, let me tell you how fast that makes my blood pressure rise. Have you ever had a 21-month-old scream, "It's no fair! I don't like it!" and then slam a door in your face? It is completely freaking infuriating.

When Nora gets sassy, she can be disciplined. Logical consequences generally work; when they don't, a time-out will almost always do the trick. Isaac, however? Logical consequences mean nothing to him at this age. So we introduced time-outs for him this week, even though he's not two years old yet (which is, as I understand it, the generally accepted "correct age" for beginning time-outs). We've only been using them for the worst offenses (hitting, throwing toys across the room during a tantrum, etc.), and only after other forms of discipline fail to stop the behavior. He'll willingly sit in time-out and he'll apologize when it's over... but then he goes right back to what he was doing. It's maddening. And my patience is waning.

They're usually such sweet, well-behaved kids, so when they go through phases like this, it always catches me off-guard and makes me wonder where we've gone wrong. Nothing else is working, so tomorrow I'm resolving to do what I always do when other forms of discipline fail - love-bomb the heck out of them. P has been away several times this week due to a death in the family and I think it's possible that they're acting up because they miss Daddy and haven't been getting enough focused attention. So I'll give them lots of extra cuddles, do my best to stay as patient as possible, focus on engaging them in kid-centric activities rather than dragging them along on errands, etc. Hopefully that will do the trick because otherwise, I just might lose my mind.


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