For half term, I decided to bring the boys away to the caravan. J and Daddy P have not been getting on recently and I hoped the time apart would do them both good.
We arrived on Sunday afternoon and my mum and dad were both here. J was excited and exuberant but on the whole he was fine. He didn’t want to go to sleep on Sunday night but eventually he did, and though he was up early on Monday morning he had slept through. On Monday we had hoped to go to the beach but the weather was bad so we couldn’t. I went to the local supermarket and got a DVD for us to sit and watch after mum and dad left.
J was bouncing off the walls by Monday afternoon despite mum taking him to the site park twice during the day to try and burn off some excess energy. He was a handful and kept doing what he knew he shouldn’t (stamping around the caravan, jumping on the sofas, being loud when he’d been asked to keep the noise down because Baby A was asleep, arguing with everyone about everything, and within 30 seconds of being told not to do something he was doing it again). Mum and dad left mid-afternoon and although he acted very nonchalant when mum said goodbye to him, he then got upset that she’d gone and upset that she’d not been able to stay longer with us.
On Tuesday my sister in law J came over for the day with my nephew and niece, A and A. J and my nephew A were very full on and kept pushing boundaries. Again, we’d hoped to go to the beach but the weather was awful. We managed to get to the park on site for the older two boys to have a run around but they insisted on taking J’s scooter which caused issues when they both wanted it at the same time and both ignored it and kept leaving it lying around in the park despite me repeatedly saying that they needed to look after it and keep close to it or someone else would walk off with it. Back at the caravan after around an hour in the park it was clear J had got tired of socialising and he just wanted to watch YouTube videos but A wanted to carry on playing which caused friction between them. After J and the kids left it was bedtime – J was exhausted and fell asleep quickly. Once again he slept through the night and I was hopeful that today would be a better day.
Today once again the weather was bad. J told me this morning he wanted to go home tomorrow, then mid afternoon he changed his mind and said he wanted to go home today. I told him it was too late – by the time I had packed everything up and sorted everything out it would be dinnertime. I said we’d go home tomorrow if he still wanted to. He agreed that he wanted to go home after lunch tomorrow. I don’t blame him – it’s hardly been the sunshine filled week at the beach I hoped for. We had a lazy day playing and watching films. We did some homework – the reading book and worksheet was easy, but J kept complaining that the answers to the questions were too long for the space provided and he wouldn’t write the answer.
Despite my best intentions I have found myself become very cross, shouting and being every inch the angry mum I don’t want to be. Its easy to say its because of J pushing and pushing and because he doesn’t do as he’s asked and because he ignores what I say so I repeat myself time and time and time again but I need to work out how to get through to him more effectively. I just wish I knew what that way is. I don’t like shouting at him, I don’t like repeating myself over and over. I don’t like angry, shouty mum and I don’t want J to remember me as constantly having a go at him.
I love that boy to the ends of the earth but he drives me so crazy. Maybe its because I love him so. Maybe this is just what normal, everyday parenting is like.
I brought the boys away to get some space between Daddy P and J because they’ve been rowing so much. Despite the fact that it’s me who spends the majority of time with J it seems to be when Daddy P is around that he is worse. Normally I find when we are away, J is much more chilled and calm than when we are at home but this time has been different.
Maybe it’s because the weather has been awful so we’ve not been able to get out and do stuff. Maybe it’s because mum and dad were here on Sunday and Monday morning. Maybe it’s because J and the kids were here on Tuesday – it was just too different, too social for him to cope with. Maybe it’s the normal pushing boundaries of a child approaching his sixth birthday. Maybe it’s the frustration of a child getting used to sharing his parents time and attention with a younger brother. Maybe it’s the frustration of not feeling like he fits in with his peers.
I don’t know. I really wish I did, but I honestly don’t know. I ask him if he can explain to me why and he says he doesn’t know either.
I guess we’ll just both have to keep on figuring it out together.