Calling all mamas for some advice. I write these blogs to share my feelings fe and try to keep it as real as I can. I also write them for giving advice and getting advice. Like I’ve said before, I don’t have real credentials but if there were credentials in mom life, I’d have a million.
My beautiful, strong willed, radiant, moody, bossy, cute, angelic at school, tantrum at home daughter can sometimes lose control of her feelings. Mostly, she doesn’t, but God there are days that I have such a trauma response to her behaviors (because of my job) that I swear I lose control of mine. I’m going to be as real and raw as I can and pray I don’t get judgment, just other moms coming together to tell me this is normal. There’s nothing more that I love that women and moms rallying around each other to help…to make us feel sane, and happy and not like a failure.
She sometimes loses so much control, mostly on days she doesn’t sleep well or she’s overtired I’m noticing, that she starts to hit or kick or be spiteful. She will take things from her brother or cousin or people she’s close with (never anyone she’s not close to) and will laugh or hit them. She has this evil laugh that will creep you out and she will scream and run around like a drunk college girl. She doesn’t respond to peaceful parenting and she doesn’t respond to a firm reprimanding mom voice. I struggle because she can become unsafe and then if she’s in her room with the door shut in time out (which I know is controversial but I only ever do it if she hits us) then she kicks the door so hard it sounds like it’s going to break. The hitting is new- it’s not with force but it’s done with intent. She can’t calm down and she’s practically sleeping as she crying and screaming.
There’s been times that it triggers such a trauma response in me that I want to hit her back. DISCLAIMER: I never have and I never will but God I want to because I’m human and it’s hard. She screams so loud I wanna scream back. I have screamed back twice, but I usually go in completely calm which makes her more upset. Then I reach my threshold and it’s mostly on days that I’ve struggled at work or days that Howie is away and this week he’s away for 5 days. Yes, 5 days. I feel guilty going to dinner or teaching and damn Zumba class (because in his world I’m not making money), it if he’s away at a car show, he’s making money so it doesn’t count. Anyone else have virtual score cards in their marriage? Yeah it’s not good. We try not too but it’s usually long trips that throw me in a resentful tizzy. I’ll take one hotel night alone with room service and a hottub, thanks.
She’s like me and I feel guilty. She bites her nails nonstop. I used to bite the skin around my nails, not thing young though. She gets overtired and cranky but her cranky turns into mood disorder or bipolar disorder in the DSM slash drunk college girl. I’m not saying I get like this, but I feel like I lose control of my emotions more lately as I get older. I try to respond calmly and mostly I really do but some days I lose my mind. I have slammed her door. I have picked her up and put her in her room and shut the door (it’s childproof door knob inside her room). I sit on the outside of her door and cry. If these behaviors happen at night- usually they happen after school- OK another BIG RAW admittance- I give my kid melatonin. I give it to her on nights she doesn’t tantrum because her body has trouble settling down per pediatrician (thanks dad for the gene). And I feel so guilty because she immediately calms and it kills me. Why can’t I calm her down? Am I terrible mom for relying on melatonin to calm my kid? I’m the worst for locking her in her room. How do I handle this behavior (I do it all day at work)? How do I separate being a teacher and a mom?
These thoughts consume my mind. Side-note- she doesn’t act like this in public, that’s how I know she’s overtired and it’s behavioral. Because being a special education teacher, you tend to diagnose your kid with every IDEA and DSM (<special ed terms) label. She’s a smart, kind, inquisitive, intrusive, emotional, empathetic sensitive soul with big feelings and my job as a mom is to help her navigate those qualities, but I feel like I’m failing because most of these behaviors happen with me. And I’ve yelled and screamed and cried in front of her during these moments.. not a lot even though it seems like it because this is what my blogs are mostly about, but tonight I did. And then she had melatonin and now she’s currently asleep and I miss her. Also, know that if she doesn’t get melatonin routinely IF she naps at school then she could be awake til 11. She also did gymnastics tonight and was amazing. She’s a leader at school and teachers go to her for help. Then at home she’s a different kid. I’ve seen all sides of her and I love every single side, but I need help with the moody throw herself to the ground crying tantrumming side.
I know I’m not a bad mom but sometimes I feel like it. The days that work is tough, Howie’s away, and we have gymnastics are particularly the days I feel like a failure as a mom. Sometimes you do what works best for you and just be crazy effing honest. That’s what I do in this blog. I love being a mom, but man it’s the hardest job I’ve ever had in my life. Having a 4 year old strong willed girl is hard. If anyone has advice on how to deal with tantrums safety and sanity, no judgment please, I would appreciate it. Remember we are all in this together, building each other instead of tearing each other down.