Time Out

“Finn, stop banging the table with your fork.” Bang. Bang. Bang. “You can turn it over and bang with the rubber like this…but you can’t bang with the metal. It hurts the table.” He looks me in the eye and smiles. Bangbangbangbangbang. “Finn! No. If you do it again, you’ll go to time out.” Bang. Bang.

I plopped him down on his bed, told him he was in time out, and left the room. He cried. I approached my mom in the kitchen and said, “Now what?! He’s never been in time out before.” P.S. We’ve since switched time out to a rocking chair in the living room so as not to confuse his safe place (his bed) with bad behavior.

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Joey and I are officially parenting…and it’s not as much fun as simply being parents.

Finn has tolerated his new little sister and every now and then we see glimmers of kindness and love toward her. He’ll ask to give her kisses or want to “pet her.”

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Sometimes we get a little excited and too rough...

Sometimes we get a little excited and too rough…

But Paisley’s arrival has also made Finn insecure and defiant. He’s calling us “my momma” and “my daddy” and won’t let us leave the room. We’ve had quite a few visitors, including his favorite people–both sets of Nanas and Papas–and he gets angry and cries when they leave. I think he feels like everyone’s leaving him. He’s a sensitive guy and his world has been rocked; he’s no longer the center of attention.

My heart breaks watching Finn choose wrong. Blatantly. He’s such a sweetheart; funny and affectionate and kind.

Fourth of July parade. A flag for each hand, a pet rock, a wagon and a blue sno cone.

Fourth of July parade. A flag for each hand, a pet rock, a wagon and a blue sno cone.

I hate disciplining him; I’d just rather laugh with him. But Finn is smart and needs boundaries from us. It’s just no fun.

Joey made the connection that we could easily take the fork away from him and remove the opportunity to do wrong. Just like God could remove temptation or difficulty from our lives. But then we may not learn discipline or self-control or trust. We give Finn a fork at dinner time, rooting for him to make the right choice to obey. I’m so proud when he does, and I’m grieved when he does not.

We’ve had our own, more pleasant “time outs” with Paisley in the past two weeks. She is a doll. She’s cuddly and content.

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Hates having her diaper changed and flips out when you have the audacity to undress her. She’s a fantastic eater/nurser/latcher/whatever and has even started sleeping 3-4 hours at a time at night. She has long, skinny feet like Joey’s, curly blonde eyelashes and beautiful pouty lips. She’s expressive and purrs like a kitten when you let her sleep on your chest.

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I’m soaking up these precious days (and nights) with her. Taking time to snuggle and play with her slender fingers and smell her sweet head.

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Time to pray and marvel at her innocence.

Parenting is hard stuff, especially when you’re functioning on a few hours of sleep and iced coffee. But so worth it. Oh, so worth it.

 

 

 

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2 thoughts on “Time Out

  1. Being a parent – the hardest but most rewarding experience of my life. You do it with grace and dignity. Love you. And that Paisley is a doll baby.

  2. You are a wonderful mommy. Parenting is a hard but joyful journey, I pray to God to guide us in every step of the way.

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