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A growing boy

Tristan with rocks in hands

So far, I've been fairly lucky in terms of parenting a 2-year old. I'd heard when they turn 2, look out. But our little one seemed to have missed that and has been mostly a doll with exception to a few incidents that seemed to occur when he was overly tired. His personality had been changing slowly enough that I could adjust my parenting to work for his changes - at least that's how I see it. But recently, it seems that his personality is changing faster than I can keep up with. As a growing boy he has a certain amount of aggression that I didn't expect. Before I had a child I always assumed that parents would put trucks in boys' hands and dolls in girls' hands. But seeing how my son has grown around these types of toys, I now know I was wrong. Don't get me wrong, he has two dolls and a few stuffed animals and he can be very sweet and nurturing, but he does love his cars and tools. I did not place any truck into my son's hand. He picked the truck up, literally and metaphorically speaking. 

I have thus far felt good about my parenting but sometimes now I forget to listen to my heart or can't hear what it is saying through my frustration. If he's overly tired, he's overly aggressive. The late spring sun is difficult to work in - if it's light outside, it's daytime and he doesn't want to take a bath or go to sleep in the day! People don't sleep in the day, he says (even though he naps every day for 2 1/2 hours!), people sleep at night. "It is night time, but the sun stays up longer in the spring." Well, I'm speaking logic and he doesn't yet speak that language. So, I have to wait for fatigue to come, and it does. He's usually good about bath - it's really not very hard to get him to take one. But last night, after bath, he pulled my hair again! It started with him brushing my hair. I would want to brush his after bath and he wasn't crazy about that idea, so I would let him brush mine to make it an even trade. It was great for a time, then he discovered that he could get a rise out of me when he pulled a little too hard with the comb. That turned into his hand pulling. He seemed to think it was hilarious when I told him it hurt (little monster!) But last night I raised my voice at him and he cried. I felt like a bad mommy. He is growing so fast and I imagine that this is the 2-year old version of adolescence. Sometimes they do things you don't understand, nor perhaps do they, but something compels them to do something not nice, they want to push their limits, see what is possible, see what they can get away with, see what causes a rise in mom or dad, see what they can and cannot do, see if they can do what their imagination can do....on and on.

A few  months back, he woke up one morning itching his hands. When I looked at them they were splotchy red. When the little rash and his itching was still there the next day, we went to see his doctor, who gave us a pretty unsatisfactory answer. Over the next few weeks, the itchy rash disappeared but the skin on both of his hands cracked and then peeled off. Just like a snake. I guess maybe he was just growing out of his skin - literally and metaphorically speaking. Something I have to get used to as his growth becomes exponential.

Now I just have to learn to grow out of mine.

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