Heart Pondering

The ponderings of one Christ-following mom on raising preschoolers

Sharing reflections, part II September 30, 2009

Filed under: Behaviors,Books,Correction,Sibling interactions — Susan @ Christian Mothering @ 4:21 am

More pondering on sharing since my last post on this topic.  I appreciated Molly’s comment about how squabbling over toys seems to occur more often between her sons when she is distracted.  That definitely resonated with me.  She said: “I wonder how much of their motive when not sharing is selfishness versus acting out for attention from me.”

It’s definitely true that all manner of misbehavior, grabbiness being high on the list, occurs in our house when I am not attending carefully to my children.  Some misbehavior may well be to get my wandering attention;  some of it may be that the lack of close oversight inflames naughtiness. Elizabeth Krueger of Raising Godly Tomatoes asks this of a mother who sees a rise of misbehavior in her children in her ‘Sibling Squabbles’ section: “Are you distracted and not watching them as well as you normally do, thus allowing more temptations than usual?”  I find her link here between maternal oversight and childish temptation insightful.  When a young child isn’t being watched by his mother, he is more tempted to sin than when he is being closely supervised.  She acts, in a way, as a kind of external conscience for him as his own internal conscience is developing. (more…)

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Short on sharing September 22, 2009

Filed under: Behaviors,Books,Correction,Sibling interactions — Susan @ Christian Mothering @ 9:54 pm

k1473841Share (verb): to use, participate in, enjoy, receive, etc., jointly.” 

There you have it, my friends, the definition of the word “share” – a concept that’s apparently incomprehensible to my two preschoolers.  Overnight, it seemed, grabbiness and a complete inability to jointly interact with anything swept over both of them like a wave in the early summer.  The precipitating factor, I believe, was my daughter’s age and the interest she began to take items that had previously been primarily my son’s domain – and her will and expressive capacity to voice this interest.  They take toys away from each other. They fight over the toys one has and the other wants (or worse, already took away).  They taunt each other by parading around with a favorite toy belonging to the other, with the express purpose of upsetting the toy’s owner.  Daily. It’s not pretty.  And it can drive a mom to the brink. (more…)

 

Ping pong parent September 18, 2009

Filed under: Emotions,For moms — Susan @ Christian Mothering @ 10:51 pm

RQBW0077I’ve been feeling like a schizophrenic the past few days.  Why, you might ask?  Because I’ve been striving to delight in my children, and to spend at least 15 minutes each day focusing on and enjoying them without worrying about competing priorities.  And these two efforts have elevated, in my mind, my own demeanor toward them – my tone, mood, word choices and attitude.  Remaining pleasant, friendly, approachable – a ready-with-a-smile mom.  I do get it that this should be my effort all the time on all days, whether I happen to be going through a phase of “working on this” or not.  However I can’t say that I dwell in this space with such intentionality all the time.  Regretful but true (though that’s a post for another time.) (more…)

 

Exasperation and 15 minutes September 11, 2009

Filed under: Books,For moms — Susan @ Christian Mothering @ 11:59 pm

BLD043693“Exasperated” is the word that best describes my demeanor when I’m with my children over the past few days…  Ok, who am I kidding?  The past few weeks.  I find myself continually annoyed and issuing directives and reprimands to my children. 

Sure, there are valid reasons for this.  The number of kids in our house just increased by 50%, and when more than one is needy or crying at the same time, it’s a new and intense experience.  The youngest is up twice each night so I’m operating in a tired and cranky mode.  The older two have recently learned how to antagonize and wind each other up in full-scale sibling squabble mode in the past few months – and oh, do they like to practice.  I pulled out my back the day after our baby’s birth and am contending with both back pain and fitting in hour-long physical therapy sessions twice each week (plus daily exercises at home).  I had to completely rebuild my laptop last week after getting a virus and sit on hold with various technology experts for hours to get the input I needed to get back up and running.  You get the point – not exactly an even-keel few weeks. (more…)

 

Quick note… September 8, 2009

Filed under: For moms — Susan @ Christian Mothering @ 4:05 am

I got a laptop virus and had to wipe and rebuild my hard drive last week.  Great way to spend eight hours when you’re juggling new life with a newborn and deprived of sleep, huh?  Tell me about it. Now if only I could get my music and photos effectively loaded onto my laptop, I’d be back in action…

I’m amazed by the tenderness one feels for a newborn.  It wells up and spills out all over her – this tiny new, defenseless life that needs protection and nurturing.  If only, I’ve been thinking, I could bottle this feeling and pull it out to dole out in great measure to my 2-year old and nearly 4-year old.  If only the primary emotions I could feel when relating to them would be nurture, adoration, a heartswell of mother love and protective instincts.  Alas, they are not… as I’ve observed increasingly in recent days.  But I need to pray for an upswell of them!