Toddler stages

Well, we are in that toddler stage where I am constantly asking my child not to put his hands in his mouth or to lick things. Yes, I said lick things. I caught him licking the window yesterday. And the playhouse. And the wall. And the dog.🤦🏼‍♀️ I think some days he does it just to annoy me or see how I’ll react. 🤷🏼‍♀️

With all the Coronavirus craziness, now is the worst time for him to be doing that! I’m following him around like a crazy person cleaning up after him, making him wash his hands, etc.

Good news is, none of us have left the house for anything but essentials. One person (my husband) is the only one who does the essentials run. We follow every rule. We disinfect packages, food packages, and anything that comes into the house. When we go on walks, we stay more than 6 feet away from people. If we see someone walking down the sidewalk towards us, we cross the street to be safe. Hands are washed regularly and surfaces are cleaned more than ever.

When your kid says the “S” word

Yesterday I took my kids on a walk around the neighborhood. There were a decent amount of people out and about. While walking, my 2 year old started yelling out “sh*t sh*t. I want to sh*t.” Yup, people looked at me like oh my gosh do you hear him? Ya I heard him! And I just laughed! 😂

Normally I’d freak out and tell him to stop immediately and explain to him why we don’t say that. But this quarantine has had me cooped up for too long. Momma just needed a good laugh. And I got one with this, because my kid wasn’t actually saying sh*t. He was saying SIT. He was tired and wanted to sit down. 😂

He’s 2. His words aren’t perfect. So to all the neighbors in Plano that heard my kid yelling out what they thought was a cuss word…..sorry? 🤷🏼‍♀️

Should I have corrected him? Maybe. But again he’s two, is just learning words, and momma needed that laugh 🤭

Speech Therapy Update

Well, there’s nothing wrong with my kid! Not that I thought there was anything wrong exactly. But I did think he needed a little help with speech. We met with a speech therapist and a child psychologist last week. They said Ryder is incredibly bright for his age and has no developmental or speech delays. What seems to be a delay in speech is due to “choice speech.” Most kids learn single words to get what they want like milk, food, juice, etc. Ryder has learned to say “I want this” or “I want that” and to point to the specific item. So he just says one of those phrases instead of the word. They said with just a little work, his words will come in. We just have to try to get him to say the word rather than say the word for him. If he says “I want that” and points to goldfish, the goal is for him to say goldfish. So we are to ask “what is that” or “what’s the word for that.”

The speech pathologist said, although they aren’t saying he needs speech therapy, working with a speech therapist could help push him along to get additional words quicker. They even have a speech therapist that will come to our home and work together with Ryder and I if we decide we want to do it!

I’ll be honest, it’s a big relief to know Ryder has no developmental delays. Not that it’s a bad thing. I know speech delays are incredibly common. But it’s just one less thing to worry about. I hate the idea of him struggling with anything.

Speech Therapy

My oldest is needing to start speech therapy. He doesn’t have as many words as other kids his age and sometimes struggles to form words. So the doctor recommended speech therapy to help us along.

We took him to a facility in Dallas and were super excited the day of. I was so positive and felt like ok here we go, we are going to get answers and some help.

I pulled up to the building and thought, no way this can be the facility. Walking in to the building I should have just turned back around and got in the car. The building looked sketchy. It was an old office building with no relation to anything medical. The waiting room was tiny and had only a few toys. It looked like someone brought some of their kids old stuff and just stuck it in the corner as a last minute thought. Not what I would have expected at a facility for kids. But I kept brushing it aside and telling myself not to judge the place because the therapist could be awesome. (Continue reading on my blog. Link in my about me)

We met the therapist and she brought us back to a tiny, hot room. We tried to ignore the temperature and just focus on Ryder. We were originally told to expect to be there an hour and a half to two hours for testing. That was not the case this time. We were there only 40 minutes. The therapist didn’t really interact with Ryder. She read us questions off a piece of paper. She literally had to reread a few questions to herself as if she didn’t understand the question! She kept leaving the room and coming back with more paperwork. It was completely disorganized and my stress level started to heighten. I was feeling zero comfort in that place.

She gave me a “score” for Ryder’s verbal comprehension and actual spoken words. The verbal comprehension score didn’t make sense or seem accurate. She hadn’t interacted with my son so there was no real way to give a score. Taking a score based off questions she asked us is not accurate.

I asked next steps and what we were to do from here. Expecting her to have a game plan or a step by step process as well as things to do at home. Her exact words were “I don’t know why he isn’t talking. We can run him through tests and see if we can figure it out.” I’m sorry but “I don’t know” isn’t any answer a doctor or anyone should ever give you! There are other ways to say you are unsure. And the fact that “running some tests” is your game plan shows you are disorganized. There should be exact next steps you take (a protocol of some sort.) I assume Ryder isn’t their first case of delayed speech. But it must be for them to not have an organized plan of next steps.

I left the facility feeling terrible and thinking to myself “I can just do this on my own.” Ive never felt so let down in my life. This is not the outcome I was hoping for. I was at least hoping for some sort of plan. Or maybe some sort of an answer. But I got nothing outside of an “I don’t know.”

Thank god for my gym. Lol I get a great workout, I feel at home there and there’s other mothers I talk to regularly. One of which who ran her daughter through similar testing but used the state of Texas’ services. She explained what they did step by step and how they worked with her and her daughter on the first visit. It was significantly different than my visit and way more of a positive one. I feel a glimmer of hope after talking to her.

I’ve reached out to the facility she used and was beyond impressed! They were so detailed in their step by step process! I had a 15 minute conversation with the woman on the phone just discussing Ryders needs and what the plan was for the first visit and everything after. This was SO different from the first place. I am really excited to get in there this week and see how they can help our little guy!!

Judging a child by their size

My mom told me a friend warned her that people assume more of big kids. What that means is, kids large for their age. I didn’t quite understand this at first because I’ve always been a smaller person. People only expected more of me because of my ability not my size.

My 2 year old is in the 98th percentile and has been since he was born. He stands as tall as some 4 year olds. More times than I care to count, I’ve had a mom say to me “he’s not talking in full sentences yet?” When I explain that he’s only 2 and has a handful of words, they get a shocked look on their face and say “oh I thought he was older than that.” I just sort of nod my head and smile.

I understand now what my moms friend meant. I try not to get frustrated with it or let it make me think my kid needs to be further ahead than he is. He’s only 2! And, every child is different. Ryder has always done things at his own pace but he’s always hit the milestones.

It’s hard ignoring people and their comments but when it comes to him I try really hard. Every kid is different. That’s what I keep telling myself 💙

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Independence

Did you know that as a child becomes more independent, sometimes a mother will non-consciously look for issues to feel more needed?

Mind you, this does not happen to every mother. But it is a very common thing to have happen. It’s understandable that it does. It’s human nature to like to feel needed and wanted. Especially when you’ve had someone like a child, who was so dependent on you for so long, go from heavy dependence to independence. I can understand how it’s a hard switch for the parent.

Sadly this is something that doesn’t just happen once. It’s something that happens often over a child’s life. A baby goes from needing to be carried everywhere, to learning to crawl and eventually walk. Toddlers move into a stage where they start to learn how to do things on their own, so they want to do EVERYTHING on their own. And this need for independence continues through the tween, teen and early adult years.

I can understand why being a mom is hard now. Going from being needed, to not being needed as much or at all is a hard transition. It definitely can take a toll on you emotionally! 🙁

Christmas with kids

I thought Christmas was exciting as a child, but no one told me how much fun it is when you have a child. Seeing the excitement of the holidays on their face just melts your heart!

My oldest is obsessed with Christmas lights. He gets SO excited when he sees them. He loves to look out the window every night at the neighbors lights. You’d think they put up different lights each night by how excited he gets to see them each time. But no, it’s the same lights every night. It’s so cute!

He isn’t 100% sure about Santa but he knows he’s associated with Christmas and points to him anytime he sees something with Santa on it.

My kids are still young so they don’t exactly associate gifts with Christmas. Which is super humbling because here they are getting excited about the lights, decorations, etc, vs the size of the presents or how many there are. Everything with them is so innocent and sweet right now. It makes you just want to freeze time and stay here in this moment forever! ❤️

Toddler Struggles

The start to yesterday’s temper tantrum was thanks to Ryders fingers……

His fingers couldn’t reach to the bottom of the raisin box to get the last few raisins to eat. This is where the tantrum began. It caused a full body drop to the floor, followed by rolling. It almost looked like he was practicing the “stop, drop and roll” we learned in elementary school for when we ever caught on fire. So naturally the visual and memory of that just made me laugh. Well, if you’ve ever laughed at a mad toddler, you know it’s a BAD idea. This made the tantrum even worse, and louder. He decided to throw the raisin box at me because I laughed at him. The box hit me causing the stuck raisins to break free and fly all over the floor. The dog came running into the kitchen because she thought something was wrong with him thanks to all the noise he was making. She saw all the raisins on the floor and began to eat them. So of course this caused the tantrum to continue further, because now his raisins are gone.

Mind you this went on for a good 10-15 minutes

Lesson learned for mom: put raisins in a bowl and never laugh at a mad toddler 🤦🏼‍♀️

What others see….

A friend of mine posted a quote the other day that got me thinking……”Your body is a reflection of your lifestyle.” 🤔

If someone I didn’t know was asked what kind of lifestyle I had based off how I looked, what would they guess? Would they guess a tired mom of a 4 month old and 2 year old? Or would they guess a hard partier because I look so tired? Lol

I’m not much of a makeup wearer, unless I’m going to an event or dinner. I’ve always hated the feel of makeup on my face so I rarely wear it. Most days I wear just mascara and lip gloss or chapstick. I only wear mascara because I feel like it opens up my eyes a little and makes me look less tired. Otherwise I wouldn’t normally waste the time putting it on.

Clothing wise, I live in leggings. It’s the most comfortable attire when chasing around a 2 year old. I see these Instagram moms in skinny pants or beautiful flowy dresses hanging out with their kids and I think to myself…..nope. I can’t even wear jeans and be comfortable during the day. I do too much up and down movements, squatting, crawling on my hands and knees, etc. I’m constantly cleaning up or picking up something. Leggings are literally the only clothing item that allows me freedom to move and feel comfortable.

I hope to most I have a “mom look” and not too much of a lazy look going on. I guess I could try a little harder in the mornings to look nice, but does it really matter? Right now my kids don’t care if I dress up for them and they’re pretty much the only people that see me regularly during the day.

I am always curious what someone passing me thinks when they see me. 🤷🏼‍♀️

Maybe it’s best I don’t know….😂

Toddler in the house

There’s nothing scarier than waking up at 4am, and hearing someone in your house going through your things……Only to find out it was your toddler who woke up and decided to have his own private play time. 🤦🏼‍♀️

Seriously though. I’ve never been more scared in my life. My husband was out of town and I was home alone with the kids. My oldest son was sleeping in bed with me because he’s still uneasy about the new baby and feeling like he’s going to get “left.” I thought I’d shut the bedroom door tight in case he did get up and wander. Clearly I didn’t. 🚪

There was a banging coming from the living room. I thought I was hearing things at first so I sat for a minute to really listen. It continued and a sort of crash followed. That’s when I knew someone was out there. Now thinking about it, if I’d been more awake I would have realized the dogs weren’t barking or going crazy. They do that if someone is just walking by the house. AND my child wasn’t in bed next to me anymore. However none of that was going through my mind at the time. The only thing I could think of was what do I do if someone is in the house? I knew I had to get to him before he got to my kids. There’s a bat under the bed so I went and grabbed that. I figured of anything I’d use my old softball skills to clobber him with the bat. 🥎

As I walked into the living room, I noticed toys everywhere. Then I saw the shadow of the intruder looked very small. That’s when it registered. It’s Ryder! The kid was up playing with his toys in the dark! I have no idea how long he was up. I’m typically a pretty light sleeper. But somehow he managed to wiggle out of my arms, get off the bed and go out into the living room all without waking me. 🛏

Just when I thought the toddler stage couldn’t get any more exhausting, mine goes and tries to give me a heart attack! ❤️