My inability to get my daughter to eat really bums me out. I think what makes her eating the "Perfect Bummer Storm" for me is that 1) she's already undersized, and 2) when she's hungry she's more prone to meltdowns/behaviors. When she eats, I think my wife would agree, we can almost make our peace with just about anything else going on in her world. When the bites go in and don't come back out it's like a weight is lifted off our shoulders (only to gradually crush us again by next meal time).
The last week or so she's been allowing just about anything to go in her mouth. . . then right back out again. Oh, she chews it a few times; long enough for me to reach for the next bite, then plech. . . down the front of her shirt.
Our morning routine becomes even more problematic because we can't be as patient with her as we can during other meal times when we don't have places to be or things to do, because we want her to get a good night's sleep, but doing that means we have an hour to get her up, dressed, fed, and ready so that I can drop her and her big sister off at the daycare.
And lately our morning routine has gotten sloppier. We put off feeding her until the last minute because it's such a frustrating process. And that just makes compounds the problem because we know it's got to happen, and when you add the stress of needing to get out the door in a set, diminishing timeframe to an already stressful task, we're left with acceptance of failure, temper tantrums (ours, not hers), or being late to work daily.
Lily also spits. It's her, "I'm pissed at you and I know you hate this, so I'm doing it" response to being forced to do something she doesn't want to do. So. . . this morning, dressed in my work attire, feeding Lily until the last minute we need to get out the door, she spit a mouthful of peaches all over my shirt. Fan. Fucking. Tastic!!
|happier (dinner) times. . .|
I was good this morning. Ever since her 'wrap' Psychologist told us to "put it on extinction" . . . ie. . . ignore it away, my patience level with being spit on has gotten better. I don't know why, but knowing that ignoring the behavior is what I'm supposed to do makes it somehow easier. That said, I was bummed and vented to my wife. And I'm essentially just venting now.
My wife leaves early for work on Wednesdays so she can leave work to come home early in the evening and take Emma to dance. I called her after the drop off and vented and she gave me the advice I always give her when she's in her low spots. "She'll come back around. She always does. We just have to chop off the peaks and fill in the valleys and remember."
That's our little mini mantra. We seem to overreact both ways. We celebrate a little TOO boisterously and let ourselves get gobsmacked to heartbrokenness by subsequent setbacks. Peaks and valleys. . . chop off the peaks, fill in the valleys, and you're left with something that approaches your new "normal".
The bright side is that, though Lily was upset at having to eat (until I set her free anyway), when I asked her if she was sad she said, "I no sad. I'm mad! I'm frustrated!" We try to reinforce the labeling of those emotions with her and I think she's understanding the differences between happy/sad/mad and using them appropriately. Because. . . she was not sad. She was mad.
Just keep swimming, just keep swimming.