I’ve been wanting to write another post or several more posts about parenting but my thoughts are a jumble, and I can’t seem to organize them or focus them. I decided to just throw out a few things I’ve been reading/thinking about so here goes.
After I finished How to Talk So Kids Will Listen and Listen So Kids Will Talk, I started reading Playful Parenting by Lawrence Cohen which is filled with great advice. Much of what Cohen says resonates through me when I think about my relationship with M. I’ll write more in a review of it once I’m done.
To give a few highlights. I’m doing a better job of engaging in wild, physical play with M, something she loves and I shy away from because I’m tired or I would rather sit down and do something quiet. But I find I enjoy it more than I expect too when I just surrender to her spirit of wildness. We’ve set up an evening play time so that most evenings M gets some one-on-one playtime with me or her Dad after C goes to bed. I’m also more aware of M working out anger or sadness through play and I’m more willing to let her play by the rules she makes up even if I find them silly or irritating or the game is structured so I can’t “win” or get a fair chance to play. I now see that this is a way for her to work though her own feelings about powerlessness.
I hope to finish the book soon. I’ve had less time for reading than I wanted partly because I have been trying to play more with M and C and be truly present for them and partly because I’ve been doing some spring cleaning/re-organizing projects mostly things to make the house more toddler friendly and give M more toddler free areas to play with the toys with small parts.
In talking to my husband about parenting issues, I was able to come up with a way to state what my goal is in all the reading, thinking, experimenting with ideas that I’m doing. I guess you could call this my mission statement: I want to discover different ways to approach behavioral problems and to find ways to discipline M and deal with her behavior issues while treating her with more respect and empathy.