It's been a lovely holiday weekend. The last two molars are apparently very stubborn taking their own sweet time. The Easter bunny came at our house, his godparent's house, and his great-grandmother's house. We attempted an overcrowded Easter egg hunt with no success though my son only wanted to see the Easter bunny which happened.
Something did happen this week that wasn't so lovely. You see, my son is two. Translation, he is one-minute calm and next-minute crazy. Sometimes he does not listen and he always hates transitions. He is a typical toddler. I don't spank or hit my child, instead I use time out and taking away the thing he loves to influence this behavior.
Sometimes I raise my voice to get his attention. This happens after several layers of repeating my directions and getting right in his face. I even warn him that it's coming. "I am running out of ways to tell you this nicely. You are about to cue the mean, mommy voice." Sometimes the warning is enough to get his attention and all is well. Other times, the voice arrives and it's mean, so mean that I sometimes scare myself. Once it arrives, I immediately stop using it and say, "Why did you make me use the mean, mommy voice on you?"
I hate the mean, mommy voice, but sometimes it's the only thing that will get his attention. One night in the bathtub, my son made me question its existence. He is a parrot, repeating everything he hears. While playing in the tub, he said, "I'm mommy, then this mean, scary voice came out. " He laughed and I went into shock.
Since that bath, I have been trying to explore other strategies so that I can phase out or at least lessen the use of the mean, mommy voice. I am trying things like talking extra softly so that he has to be quiet to hear me, sitting quietly not doing what he wants while I count to myself, and longer bouts of time out.
I so dislike shouting. I don't want my son to be scared of me and violence is never the answer. The mean, mommy voice has it's place, but it's more for emergencies when my son could hurt himself or others. We will figure this out so that I can raise him to be kind, gentle and polite. This will happen, I just need to remember that sometimes the person who needs to go to time out is me.
To quote my son, "I better be nice."