Will Power Included

My toddler likes to wind me up. He’s gotten into this habit of choosing to not do as I ask. It occurs to me how tyrannical that sounds until I put it in the context of attractive nuisances. In this case, the dvd player. I’m pretty sure he could actually operate it correctly, even at 18 months. It’s those darn impulse-control short circuits that make it less heart-attack inducing to just say “no”. So, in the heat of the moment I shout “Stop!” from wherever I’m sitting/standing.  And, either he ignores my shout and carries on or he crumbles into a pool of misery that mommy raised her voice at him. Which tears me up with guilt and isn’t productive.

I’m un-schooling myself in the art of yelling. As an added bonus I’m learning to slow down for this little man to show him how to navigate life.That’s one thing I often wish for, myself, is for folks to have a little patience with me. It was an epiphany to remember that he’s clumsy in his new skin and has no idea what is going on. I resolve to take the time to narrate to him and give him room to converse.

Productivity is insidious and ill-defined. I have caught myself watching the clock and waiting for him to take a nap so I can perform some domestic chore. And then, as he’s falling asleep in my arms and I catch myself counting his eyelashes and attempting to memorize the shape of his nose, everything falls away and I fall in love all over again. Don’t fall victim to productivity!

Maybe, when he wakes from his nap I’ll offer up the remote to my kiddo and show him how to be in charge of turning it on and off.


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