Sunday, July 31, 2011

Challenges of the Three-Year-Old

If you've been reading, you know that right now we're in a challenging period with Sawyer.  He has been really defiant lately and argumentative and disobedient, all the while trying to give up his nap.  Kids go through phases and there are other factors at work here:

1.  Rob has been gone a lot because it's summer.  Any mom knows that having dad around does something with helping your kids obey.  Typically, I mean.  There's something about getting in trouble with dad that trumps getting in trouble with mom.  Usually.

2. Growth spurt?  Jenna texted me (and I forgot to write you back!) with the thought that Saw may be going through a growth spurt as when her son goes through them, he eats like mad and behaves that way too.  The other night for dinner, Saw ate two turkey dogs, one turkey burger, three fish sticks and two cereal bars.  Maybe some other stuff too.  See what I mean?  So we may have some of that as well.

3. Lack of nap. This is a big one.  Sawyer still desperately NEEDS a nap.  I am still making him stay in his room and have an alarm set for when he can come out.  I make him lay down in the floor, and yet, he mentally fights with all he has.  In fact, I've had to get up two or three times while writing this to regulate.  It's exhausting for me, and more exhausting for him.  I can see a huge difference from the days where he does fall asleep in there to the days where he doesn't.  You can't MAKE a kid fall asleep, and that's the hard thing.  We can put him in the best situation to encourage sleep and then enforce it, but it won't make him fall asleep.

It's been hard on me and hard on my parents, who have had to deal with a ton of bad behavior from him.  I am excited for the end of this phase and trying to keep my chin up and really enjoy the sweet moments to balance it out.  If someone had to ask the hardest parts of having kids, I would say that the first is giving up so much for yourself.  The second is a very CLOSE second, and that's discipline.  I'm very thankful that while it's constant, the need for discipline like we have right now comes in waves.


  1. I know what you mean about the father being gone. Mine has been in Korea for a year so it's tough. The kids don't take me as seriously.

  2. Kiki, we have had this issue since Mackenzie turned two, but it seems to be over now. We took her off ALL artificial food dye/color (ie: yellow 5, yellow 6, red 40, red 50...). And after 3 days she became a normal three year old. No more defiant peeing on the carpet, throwing crazy tantrums, and now she even sleeps better (still no naps). We COMPLETELY removed these from her diet, and they are banned from our home! Any ingredient followed by a number is a petroleum based product that tends to show up negatively in our behavior (especially at age 3). Even one bite of this stuff can set a kid off for up to two weeks! You may consider seeing if this is in anything he is eating, remove those things and see if it makes any difference? It is in strage stuff, not always candy (things like relish or bar-b-que sauce!). Call or e-mail me if you want to try this and need help. I also contacted many fast food and ice cream shops to get ingredients and would love to pass those on to you if you would like.


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