“You don’t scare me. I have three teenagers at home.” Actual words I said recently.
This stage is growing me more than any before. The biggest area of growth I think is learning how to listen. Well, learning how to listen to a teenager.
The kids know when I’m not really listening and just throwing in a Wow! or That’s cool! simply to keep things moving. I have to stop, make eye contact, listen, and ask questions. This isn’t teenager specific, I’m finding it’s just good manners. Also, when they feel heard and understood, their hearts are much … Read the rest
I am stretching and growing, and sometimes I am resisting stretching and growing. We are being asked to parent differently than we used to, because we have different kids in our house. They are no longer three and completely dependent; they are in middle and high school, and fighting tooth and nail against dependence.
I used to say, “Here’s your lunch.” That gave way to, “What would you like for lunch?” And now I hear, “Hey mom, can I make ______ for lunch?” It’s weird, and I have so much more food in the house than I used to…and also … Read the rest
As our kids get older, it’s tricky to know what is and isn’t appropriate to blog about. Their privacy is important to me. I don’t want them to someday discovery that I have a blog (in a very, very loose sense of the term) and be mortified about what I’ve shared.
But here goes.
Our children are 11, 12, and 13 years old. The disrespect in our home is on an upward swing. “Well, Janna, we don’t let our kids be disrespectful.” That’s wonderful. We don’t let them be disrespectful either, and yet here we are. They are free-willed, eyes-rolling, … Read the rest
We’re moving. Maybe you didn’t know that. Here’s a brief run down…
July 30: house on the market; 8 showings in 4 days, 3 offers, sold August 3; 3 weeks of packing like crazy, then a bad inspection and a buyer backing out.
Oh, and we were preparing for a 13-day cross-country vacation.
On the day we left for vacation, we put the house back on the market, show-ready, and let our realtor do his thing. We just drove away with headaches, stomach aches, heart aches. We came back on a Tuesday, house sold on Saturday, September 10. Back to … Read the rest
I’ve written (and written and written) about Eli’s anger, sorry if you’re sick of it. I am too, honestly. But praise God – we’ve found answers!
After a particularly rough patch with Eli, our pediatrician recommended moving from seeing a counselor to a child psychiatrist. We went, he listened, and very quickly and confidently said Eli has ADD (not ADHD), it’s 90% chemical, and he was on the wrong medication. “Get him on the new meds and you’ll see a difference in two hours.”
I was elated, Chad was skeptical – spot on for both of us. We ended … Read the rest
I started writing about parenting Eli’s anger a year ago. A YEAR. Quite frankly it’s wearing me down.
It used to be that he would keep it together all day at school, then come home and just fall apart. But now we homeschool, and he doesn’t have to keep it together (I keep reminding myself that’s a GOOD thing). So he yells at me for rather small things…
– there isn’t any meat to put in his scrambled eggs
– his math is too hard
– his math is too easy
– the milk was put away when we should … Read the rest
I had the opportunity last weekend to attend my third Hearts at Home conference, and as usual it did not disappoint. I heard great insight from so many speakers, took page after page of notes, and was inspired to continue to be a better mom.
One thing I noticed (and appreciated) about each speaker is that they weren’t pushing me to be like them. They were merely sharing their journey and encouraging me along my own.
We are each on our own journey, with our own map and our own equipment, and let’s not forget our own unique traveling … Read the rest
Today, I am waving the white flag. I surrender. I give up. I quit. However you want to word it, that.
I called a friend to take a child. THE child. The one who makes me want to shoot lasers out of my eyes, and then hug him tight to let him know I won’t ever give up on him.
Please make sure that you have that friend – the one who sees your white flag and will answer with an open door, no questions asked. And you will gladly reciprocate should the need arise.
That’s it for this post. … Read the rest
So Eli’s anger. I can see that we’re getting better at managing it, and though every fiber of my being wants to engage, I have seen time and again that if I don’t his outbursts are shorter lived. There’s a win.
The problem I’m seeing now is that he is getting bolder with his disrespect. He flat out refuses to do what I ask, and when I calmly give him the opportunity to choose different words, he repeats himself.
“What happens if I don’t?”
“I’m not doing my homework.”
“What’s another reason why I should?”
What concerns me more … Read the rest
Last month I began writing about Eli’s anger problems in an effort to invite you into my world, but also in hopes to make sure no one is going through this alone. Here’s where we’re at currently.
After a trip to the therapist, we have some new “tools” to use at home.
1. Calming down is the goal.
When Eli is angry, the goal must be calming down. It is not giving him a consequence for his anger (which is hard for me), it is not reasoning with him (which is hard for me), it is not threatening him with … Read the rest