A year since the boys' arrival is soon approaching. We've come a long way in a lot of respects, and are still struggling in others. I've been reading a couple blogs in which the families have just recently returned, and it is bringing back LOTS of memories. Some great, some very painful.
H had another spitting/screaming episode the other day. He hadn't had one in a really long time. I feel responsible for it in some ways, I should have eased off of him. I was PMSy, and was triggered by his disrespect -- he resembles a teenager in a lot of ways. Anyway, he ended up spitting at Lire, so I carried him to his room so he could spit on his bed as I held him, and not at his brother or anywhere else in the house.
I held him while he screamed about how much he hated me, how he wanted to go to the store with Daddy, a few odd threats thrown in. I started to watch my breath go in and out, trying to become an observer as well as a participant to the situation. I realized I should have stayed downstairs and ignored a few of his earlier activities and words. None of this would have happened, and who cares if he trashed the piano?
I think my conscious breathing calmed him. He stopped fighting me and his shrill scream turned into a little boy's crying. I said a few things that validated how he might feel -- angry at me, afraid, not liking when people didn't like the things he did and being told to stop doing those things. He nodded at most of them, especially the last one. He said he didn't like it when people told him to stop or to change. I acknowledged that it is hard to hear people tell you that they don't like what you're doing. And I told him I didn't like it much, either, but sometimes it was to help us. I admitted that Daddy and I often told one another we didn't like what the other was doing or saying, and although it made us angry, we knew it was usually to help us make better decisions. He actually seemed quite interested in this.
Hugging ended our session, and he went outside and did yard work with Dad.
None of this really had to have happened, if I had just minded my business and let the kid be a kid. At the same time, I'm glad we ended up having the discussion we had at the end. I always feel spent and a bit of a failure after one of these blow-ups. However, I do feel I'm learning how to get through them better, H and L seem to be weathering their tantrums better and we're avoiding them more.