Conversations with toddlers

One of the most exhausting things in the world……having a conversation with a toddler. My child is obsessed with the trash man, trash truck and trash bin. The trash bins outside not the small trash cans in your house.😂

I have no idea why. That’s just his thing right now and he talks about them non stop. Every conversation, no matter what it’s about, you can expect him to bring up something about a trash can or the trash man. If he hears a truck outside, he yells out “trash truck!” It could be just a regular, non commercial truck and he still yells it.

If you take him on a walk he will point out every single trash bin in the neighborhood. EVERY SINGLE ONE! What could be a 10 minute walk turns into 30-40 minutes because he has to stop so many times to point each one out. And heaven forbid the lid be left open on one or the front side not be facing out. He will let out a gasp as if something terrible just happened, point to the trash can and tell you the lid is open or it’s not facing forward.

I’ll be honest, it was funny and adorable at first. But now it’s a little tiring. I keep hoping every day something new will peak his interest and he will start talking about that every day. I need a break from hearing about the trash men, truck and bins! 😳

Potty Training….

How’s potty training going in our house? Well my toddler prefers to poop in the yard like the dogs instead of going in the toilet like a big boy. So I’d say it’s going well. We are just taking a small detour. 😂

My kid does things on his own time. He walked one month after crawling. He woke up one morning and started talking. He literally had me so worried he wasn’t going to talk. He got to 2 1/2 and still wasn’t talking. Then out of the blue he just decided ok today’s the day I’ll start talking and it hasn’t stopped!

So no I’m not pushing the potty training. I’m letting him do things on his own time. Would I like him to be potty trained right now? Absolutely! Diapers aren’t cheap. But often times when you try to force a kid to do something they won’t or actually take steps in the opposite direction. So I’m just letting him tell me when he’s ready. We encourage it and talk about it, but never force it.

I’m not exactly sure why he wants to poop in the yard. It is a little odd, I’ll admit that. But he does love his dog. And maybe he’s just intrigued by the fact that she does it outside. I don’t know. I’m just trying to laugh it off for now. Because one day when he’s older, and potty trained, it’ll be a great story to tell!

Well behaved kids

My father-in-law gave me the biggest compliment the other day. He said my kids were the most well behaved kids he’s ever met. This might not seem like a big deal to most people, but I took it as a major compliment!

I work very hard to help my kids learn to be respectful and kind even at a young age. Don’t get me wrong, we aren’t without our temper tantrums and meltdowns. But those I don’t consider to be completely behavioral. They’re typically related to communication struggles and frustrations in understanding their own emotions. So I consider meltdowns and temper tantrums to be more learning and developmental related vs behavioral. Not to mention, they are starting to become few and far between. A majority of ours were due to my toddlers lack of communication since he was struggling with words. Now that he’s gotten more words, he’s less frustrated and able to voice what he needs. So we saw a significant drop in temper tantrums and meltdowns.

I’ve also worked really hard to change my mindset. I used to get so frustrated with my toddler when he would have a meltdown or temper tantrum. After I learned they were mainly due to his frustration in not being able to communicate, I was able to change my thinking and my actions. When he has a meltdown, I try really hard to talk to him softly, hug him or sometimes just let him be. Sometimes he needs a hug and other times he just needs his space. Same as adults!

Meltdowns and temper tantrums aside, my kids really are pretty well behaved! They listen well (most of the time.) They are good with following directions and doing what’s asked of them. My oldest loves to please people. If you ask him to do something and he does it, he gets so proud of himself. Sometimes I have him do goofy little tasks for me just because I know it makes him so happy and proud to help mommy.

By no means am I saying my kids are better than anyone else’s. I’m just saying how proud I am of them and how I appreciate someone pointing out how well behaved they are. It makes me feel like I’m doing something right and navigating this parenting stuff successfully!

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 🤭

Wash your hands!

Apparently the flu risk is high in Dallas right now. I never used to get the flu shot but after having kids I do. The last thing I want is one of us (or all of us) catching it. I feel like we are more at risk of getting it with them being around other kids now. So many little hands in mouths! 🖐🏻

I’ve been having both my toddler and infant wash their hands like crazy. I’ve also been disinfecting toys regularly, especially with Camden in the teething phase and chewing on everything! Most germs can survive on fabric for a while, so I change their clothes the minute they get back from day care. I’ve been washing my hands more than normal as well. With the Coronavirus flying around I feel like we can never be too safe! 🙅🏼‍♀️

Here’s a couple random facts that might get you thinking……🤔

Did you know that low humidity enables the flu to survive longer and spread faster?! Also, people spread germs more easily in cold weather due to more time indoors together. 🏡

1 in 10 people don’t wash their hands after using the bathroom. This is one major way we spread germs! We were taught this when we were kids! 95% of people don’t wash their hands long enough to kill harmful bacteria. The CDC recommends washing your hands for 20 seconds. Not sure how long 20 seconds is? Sing your ABC’s twice through at a normal speed. That’s about 20 seconds! 🧼

Wash your hands and say a prayer you don’t catch what’s flying around! That’s about the best we can do. 🤷🏼‍♀️

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! 🙁