Monday, March 9, 2009

I just read Saturday's entry & feel sad about it. He's only four. We're too hard on ourselves and him. We love the little guy so much, I just need to acknowledge the fact that he's adjusting, too.

I have no idea what events will happen tomorrow, or the next day, or in the next decade. I don't know if I'll ever hear my heels go *clack clack* on the brick courtyard in downtown Knoxville, being almost assaulted by the heavily perfumed magnolia air. So thick it chokes, constricts the lungs. Sit down, sweat a little. It's so fragrant and beautiful. And exhausting. Heels must be just so. Sunglasses must be perfect. To wear tights after May is a death wish, an invitation to asphyxiate from the steam.

But a quick stroll is all that's needed. It's just heavy on the summer. Up here, it's heavy on the winter.

Again, no idea what's coming my way. Backwards is not a direction that human beings can take. I'm not Marty McFly. But, if being up here has taught me anything yet it's this: dreams do sometimes come true. I don't mean that in the lyrical sense but the literal.

I've had three or four dreams come true since our move up here. Not dreams "oh our dream is to someday live in Alaska and see wildlife and live by a stream..." I mean that dreams I've had while sleeping, in the literal sense, have manifested themselves in waking hours. Places have solidified, familiar things from memorable dreams have shook my hand. If living in Tennessee was like living in a 1930's photograph, full of heat and emotion and scrambling...relative calm, then wild struggle to retain or regain...then living in Alaska is like calm realization. Epiphany. Meeting a doppleganger in person.


Erin said...

Just wanted to let you know that I am going through many similar issues with my 3 year old.

Suddenly "NO!" is his favorite word and when he can't get his point across through language, he throws things at me or holds his fists up and scrunches up his little face, like he's ready to swing a punch at me (so far he hasn't, but I'm just waiting..)The temper tantrums are out of control and most of the time I have no clue what he is even mad about. I have no idea where my sweet little baby went, but I know he's still in there somewhere! Whoever said the terrible twos were bad, had yet to make it into the 3's and 4's!

Anyway, just wanted to let you know you're not alone. I'm right there with you! It's such a hard age because they have all of these different emotions all balled up inside and don't understand yet how to release them in a positive way. I pray patience for both of us. :)

Chrissy Johnson said...

Thank you SO much for the prayers and words. Did your oldest exhibit similar behavior?
We put away all of his things that are Star Wars related...we said that it hurts when he hits, and it hurts us to put the things away, but we really couldn't think of an alternative! So far, it's working. As he exhibits good behavior, he gets a toy or two back. I threw away two of those galactic hero storm troopers away at the hair salon the other night after he ran away from me twice in the street, out the salon door. I find myself in the moment, praying for guidance before harsh words fall out of my mouth. No one EVER talks about 3 and 4! 2 was a total breeze!

Erin said...

I have had to use that tactic as well, because time outs don't seem to help much anymore. My oldest had his moments, but not anywhere close to what I'm dealing with now. Although he went through a horrible phase when he was around 5 yrs. old where he would go into these horrible rages like he was a monster. It was really scary and I thought about seeking out help, but then it just stopped and he was back to his normal self again.

I think part of it is age related, where they're trying to test the waters of independence and control. But I think it can worsen when children are put into a new and different environment. We have moved around a lot and I notice a temporary change in behavior each time immediately afterward, which looking back now I think is what my oldest was coping with during that time.

Anyway, sorry to ramble on! Feel free to e-mail me if you ever need someone to talk to or even just to vent. :)

jen said...

thanks for your kind note, glad you can appreciate my random thoughts-- and the cold!
you are a beautiful writer.
and i hear you about the four-year-old. i do have to say two was worse (at least for my first), but i remember asking my mom when she was two, "and what do they do wrong at four, five, seven? " etc. i couldn't even imagine it could still be hard by now. but yes, every age has it's own set of trials. lest we get too comfortable with this job or our abilities. . .
i feel like if i can do my best to remain the calm one (which obviously doesn't happen all the time)-- then one day they will have to pick up on the "way things should be." they'll work these little things out of their system (and move on to the next stage).
but what do i know, i mean really. . .

Chrissy Johnson said...

...Remaining calm is key, right? I think I'm getting a bit decent at the benevolent ignore. The phrase, "pick your battles" and "water off a duck's back" keep running through my head.

And thanks for the words about my writing! To quote a friend of mine who had some wise words, writing is NOT like riding a bike.

It takes so much practice to get back into.