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I could just cry...

It's been a tough couple of days here at home (though going to Audrey's birthday party yesterday was a pleasant respite)...

Bryn has a cold, and basically neither Dave nor I have had any decent sleep in the past 48 hours because of it. Yesterday, I felt quite sick from the sleep deprivation. I've been more sleep deprived in the past, but I think I'm feeling pretty stressed right now as it is and so I'm reacting more intensely this time that I have before.

We are also having MAJOR issues with Luey atm. Partly, this is a 4 year old thing, and we went through this with Erik to some degree. In addition to that though, I believe Luey is reacting to the general underlying tone of aggression in the house, mostly stemming from us all adjusting to Dave being home all the time, and just not coping with life with kids on a 24/7 basis... Dave tends to badger the kids, to try and "keep them in line". They're really not used to that. Dave has always policed the boys, and I've always given them more space (within fairly strict limits), right now they don't have any space at all.

Erik reacts to this in his usual quiet, passive way, but Luey is fighting tooth and nail, and more than that. It's bringing out real defiance in Luey. Luey has that classic stubborn streak often attributed to redheads.

A few weeks ago we caught the boys playing a game in the bedroom that they thought was very amusing - namely peeing up against the wall. It was, mostly likely, at Erik's iniation - being that he is the one who tends to think that sort of thing is funny to do... We reacted fairly strongly, mostly out of shock.

Anyway, yesterday Dave caught Luey doing this again. Luey was doing this within a minute of me telling him he couldn't bring out a big plastic truck to the loungeroom where I was trying to get Bryn to sleep, and it really did seem like an act of defiance. Now, the thing is, we had noticed a scent of urine eminating from the boys' room over the past few days, and it did seem unusually strong, but we thought it was because the room had been shut up with the recent cold that's come across Melbourne.

Anyway, now we're thinking Luey has probably peed on the wall/floor in there a few times in recent days. The smell is shockingly bad. The carpet needs a professional clean, and we're about to go away for a bit and probably won't get it done before we go. I've just sourced a product of the net called "Urine Off" that is used for pet urine and in hospitals and care homes to removed urine stains and odours. I can buy it at a pet store locally according to their retailers guide, so I'll pick that up this morning and apparently it contains enzymes that will break down the insoluable uric acid crystals (something household cleanser don't/can't do)...

But how to get Luey to stop peeing on the carpet??? Especially if it is an act of defiance?

Sometimes I feel so useless as a parent. Like, I can see the problem, I can sort of see how to fix it, but I just can't quite make it happen.

I firmly believe that people do mean things to each other out of personal pain. This is something I've REALLY started to understand deeply, and it makes it very easy to have compassion, but at the same time, I also have my own pain (we all do, right?) and so I know I like to "share the misery" as much as anyone else. Luey is obviously feeling pain to be acting this way, and I think we (his parents) are the main creators of his pain through our own actions which are based in our own frustrations. We need to rise above our need to make others (our kids) feel our pain, in order to prevent them from feeling pain themselves, which they then also want to share with the people around them (it's such a vicious cycle, isn't it?)... Oh, but how. It's not a matter of will. It's a matter of empathy and compassion, and having the resources to give those things...

Comments

Nic and Beren said…
Oh really hope you get some sleep today, and Bryn feels better.
katef said…
Oh Sif - I know it really must feel like you are caught in a never ending cycle... but stop and read your post and you have to realise that you are one step ahead of most of us because you have been able to stop, take a step back and look objectivly at what is going on. I know it doesn't make it any easier to deal with 'in the moment' but I really believe you are half way there already just by being able to see through the actions to the feelings. I hope you find a way to deal with this stress for all of you and it settles really soon.
Rae said…
I completely agree with Kate. You are so beautifully articulate in the way you can decipher all the elements at play here. You are as far from a useless parent as you can get but I can understand how frustrating it can feel to know what your problems are but not have the energy or 'will' as you say to get yourself over that last hurdle and fix them. Perhaps because you are spending so much energy thinking about everything that needs to be done. You are a thinker. That in itself is a hard but essential job that is overlooked by many. You provide an overview and a solution, it would be good if someone else could be delegated to carry it out hey? Don't know if this makes any sense, just thinking through your dilemmas. Have felt like this many a time. :) ((BIG HUG))
HipbubbyMama said…
((((hugs)))) I agree with the others-identifying the source of the problem is a large part of the challenge & you are obviously very aware. Dont be so hard on yourself-sometimes kids just do stuff to challenge us and it no one's fault. Is it possible Luey is just bored, and acting out that boredom destructively? Maybe taking him out more to run off that energy (like wew ere discussing the other day-bloody hell you should see Liam he goes berserk in open spaces!) might help fix this? As you said, its been cold and they've not been out much...

Oh and thats great about the urine stuff. I have to bring my old, incontinent cat inside now its getting cold, so i'll prolly need to get the name of that stuff from you..

( *rolls eys* and *sighs* resigned to the fact that cat will create a piss party in my house..)
Sif said…
Thanks guys! I've got the Urine Off now, it *only* cost $23, but if it does the job, it'll be well worth the money!!!

Rofl, Rae about "if only" getting others to execute my solutions - you have no idea how often I've thought that, hehehehe!

Had a lovely visit at Jen's and feeling much refreshed by that, and have two who new blogs out of it - now, if only I can remember them...
Narelle said…
I'm glad you had a good day today.

Anyway, I agree with what the others say. Being able to rationally identify the real cuase is bloody fantastic parenting.

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