Parenting….Lions and Tigers and Bears, Oh My!

First and foremost let me say I love being a mom and I love my boys but some days I wish we could have a day without a lion, a tiger, a bear or any combination of the above. Parenting is so hard. Currently it is actually my eldest that is causing mommy the most anxiety and stres.

You know how they say that you see yourself in a mirror when you look at your children? Well with my oldest that is most definitely the case. What I struggle with the most is the fact that I see all the personality traits that I struggle with in him. Many of these traits are really good but have their dark side as well.

Perfectionist When my son goes to do something he seems to live by the adage “if it is worth doing it is worth doing right.” I love this adage and live by it as well. The dark side of this is that if he can’t do it well (or perfectly) he would rather quit or not try at all. Needless to say, we are working on this……together.

Shyness/Social Anxiety This one is so hard for me because it hurts me so bad to see him struggle with this. In a new place, new situation, with new people he becomes painfully shy. Won’t participate shy, pulling on his clothes (nerves), standing in the back of the room/pack, often sobbing/dissolving into tears painfully shy. I as his mother struggle with how to help him with this. I try to expose him to things/situations to help him overcome these fears and find his courage but many times have guilt and question myself…..”am i pushing too hard?”, “should we have even bothered with this?”, “why is he like this?”, and “how on earth am I going to help him with this?” all while not trying to be the “helicopter mom”. Thus far there has never been anything we have tried (t-ball, gymnastics, Awanas) that he hasn’t ended up enjoying but the beginning is so rough on all of us. I often wonder if there is anything that could be done different so it wouldn’t be so rough……

Control He, like his mother, likes to be in total control of a situation. When he is not in control he gets very frustrated, upset, and emotional about it. Currently we are struggling with night-time bed wetting….again. We had been dry for a long time (6+ months) but several months ago it started again. We recently even reverted back to pull-ups as we were changing the bed every morning. He will have several dry days in a row but then will several wet ones. There seems to be no pattern. He is frustrated with it, so yesterday he cried while going pee pee before bed because “[he] has been going pee pee at night before bed but [he] still has an accident.” Again, I can’t figure out how to fix/help him with this one either. (I will mention on this that my son is 4 and his pediatrician is aware and thinks this will just come with time/age).

So these are the Lions, Tigers, and Bears. We deal with them daily. Are they all bad? No. In fact some of these traits I know will help him succeed in life but as I said earlier they have their dark side as well. Prayers, thoughts, and advice are all welcome as he didn’t come with an instruction manual……lol!


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