Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Okay, so I'm back

I've been waiting for something to inspire me out of my blogging depression and self-pity party and this pic did the trick.
I took this pic with my phone because I still don't have a proper camera yet.

Isn't she just darling?!
I love my little sunshine even on days when she is feeling a little overcast and rainy.

The Rainy Moments:
Right now, the rainy moments are when she throws a fit (the screaming, arched back, kicking legs kind) almost every time I try to put her in the car seat.
So in response we have become hermits who never leave the house.
No, not really but I seriously consider whatever it is taking us out today if it is worth it.
The other day we were getting back in the car from a needed grocery store run and she was screaming and kicking etc... I pulled out one of my sometimes successful parenting tools (nothing is surefire with a toddler). It is to show empathy and understanding to the child and since the child is a toddler, this tool pretty much sounds like this (in a loudish voice with feeling but not yelling) "NO, NO, NO CAR SEAT! AURORA NO CAR SEAT!" Also, as toddler's are physical beings for added understanding and empathy I pound on the car seat a couple times. (This particular tool of the many I try in the daily car seat episodes is from Dr. Sears' book The Happiest Toddler on the Block) Well, after repeating this a few times not only did it not have any effect on her (at least in the moment...I know years down the road she will say to me "Gee, Mom you're swell. Thanks for understanding that I hated that darn car seat."), it dawned on me what this might look like to someone who couldn't fully see or understand what was going on inside the car. 
A small child is screaming like a banshee and I'm pounding on the car seat.
"No officer, I wasn't hitting or intimidating my child. No, I wasn't even hitting the car seat out of frustration...at least not this time. Yes, I know the store's security camera caught bits of it on tape but I was actually trying to show my child that I understood her feelings. That understanding strengthens attachment which influences biological systems to slow down and become calm." 
Then I envisioned the officer giving me a look and saying: 
"Uh-huh. Okay, why don't we just step over to my car here and you can wear these pretty shiny bracelets on both hands behind your back while we head downtown."
So, I gave up on empathy for the moment and instead used bribery by giving her a piece of chocolate.
This calms her long enough to put her arms through the seat belt restraints but I finish the buckling while she begins screaming and kicking again.

The Sunny Moments:
-When I can see her laughter break through on her face like a beam of light before the bubbling sound escapes from her mouth.
-When she spontaneously cries out with joy "Momma!" and hugs me.  
-When she sings along with the Primary songs cd that we use as her bedtime music.
-When she receives anything from me or gives anything to me even trash or a partially chewed piece of food, she always says "thank-you-welcome."
-When she spells or reads.
Yes, that's right my not even two year old daughter recognizes about 20 words whether it is written or spelled aloud. She adds a word or two a week to her repertoire. Her favorite words to spell herself are: Aurora, cat, home, Momma, and Daddy. She's also very fond of the words: fish, dog, sun, ball, star. She also knows: book, tree, stop, pig, bed, out, and a few more that I'm not remembering right now. This week she has added the word 'jump' to her list. It's so much fun for the three of us- being the bookworms and word lovers that we are.

Just so you know, I don't believe her to be a genius.
I wouldn't want to box her in and label her with that so early in life even if she was.
 I believe her to be very interested and talented with letters, words, and reading for now (and maybe writing in the future). It also helps that she is still in the small window of time where language acquisitition is quicker and easier.
Just so you know, I am bragging though :)

Anyways, so now your caught up on some of our doings, well at least Aurora's doings.

Even though it's rainy and dreay here I'm wishing you all a little sunshine to remind you of the hope of spring!