Friday, May 21, 2010

"Every Kid Is Different"; so what is normal???

We tell ourselves not to compare our kids to their peers or their siblings but I know we're all guilty of not doing that. Or maybe I should speak for myself and say "I don't do that". When I only have two kids, and they are both boys, it's hard for me to determine what is normal age appropriate behavior and what is not. Especially when I know all kids have their own personalities and their own learning then why shouldn't I compare what my kid is doing to his peers? Once again: because every child is different

I get that. Really I do.

However, my boys are so polar opposite that I am starting to lose my mind trying to get a grasp on what they should and should not be doing and what is "normal" and what is not!

Take my first born for example. He just turned 7. From an early age he could speak, walk, jump, throw a frisbee, communicate, follow rules, understand cause and effect, is very regimented, etc. He was a very serious baby too. Rarely giggled or smiled, but when he did he was genuinely happy. As he grew older, I noticed that he was a very "structured" baby; much like me. I always like to know where I'm going; for how long; and when I will be back. He always asks what's next: even if we are engaging in something active. He's just always thinking ahead.

Then there's my youngest son. He just turned 5. He's a fly-by-the-seat-of-my-pants-laid-way-back dude. He doesn't understand consequences and has absolutely no care in the world. Unlike his oldest brother he just doesn't get into the daily routine (at all); is always the last to do E-V-E-R-Y-T-H-I-N-G and has no competitive spirit. But on the flip side he's very sweet, bubbly, funny, imaginative and has the BEST belly laugh. It's contagious really. I hear him laugh and I can't help but chuckle myself. But because he's not "on task" 99.99% of the time, he's wearing my patience thin.

I swore I would not be a yeller. I don't respond to it, nor should I expect my kids to. But let me tell you...when I use the "please" and soft tone nurturing voice 3 times or more and don't get a response, I can't help but find myself YELLING just to startle him...even a little bit! It's like "HELLLLOOOO McFLLYYYYYYY". Ugh!

I know my boys are happy little spirits. I see what they draw in the driveways with their chalk, or with their markers on paper, or when we do "make up story time". I know from that they are happy and not quite emotionally messed up from my parenting (that will be in a few years I'm sure) but man.....I'm telling you......I'm about ready to explode! I just want them to both be on the same page...or at least tell me why one is and the other isn't....and how we can meet in the middle......and is my oldest not normal for being what I think is normal (and instead is "ahead of the curve) and my youngest is the normal one afterall? LOL!!!!!!!!

There are days I just give in....and just accept the fact they are on different levels.....and try to accommodate both with different approaches in the ways I communicate with them.....but it' that selfish of me to say it like that???


So, tell me, what is normal?


Pooh said...

Um, Ty not only looks like a little Scott mini-me, but he apparently acts like a little Scott. I remember Scott being that exact same way, and look how he turned out once he got hooked up with some structure. It sure took a while, though, didn't it? Ty will get there, too. And Scott doesn't seem at all damaged from Mom yelling at him. He probably doesn't even remember half the things I do about him getting in HUMONGOUS amounts of trouble as a youngster due to his devil-may-care, happy-go-lucky, laid-way-back ways. If he doesn't remember getting in trouble as a teenager, though, then it was the beer. :)

Moms yell. That is what is normal. The end.

Love you!

Lisa said...

Well, I'm the last person on the planet to answer that question! But I think they are both normal in their own way, and they are definitely both happy, wonderful boys. If you do ever figure out what normal is, let me know! I wouldn't recognize it either. :^)

Denise said...

Let me know if you find out!

Alyssa said...

Despite your frustration, Christy, I found this post VERY cathartic, because I'm thankful I'm not the only mom out there just shaking my head. If I were a cartoon illustration, there would be a GIANT question mark in the speech bubble over my head most of the time. I'm soooo right there with ya, on the "what is normal" question. Sigh.

Shell said...

Normal is in the eye of the beholder :o) I say it jokingly, but seriously, I think it is. There are moments my kids are exactly alike, then there are days I wonder if they're even related they are so different. Kids are just one of those mysteries of the world that can't be defined.

Chi-townRawlins said...

GOOD question. And there's pretty much no good answer. But you should just know you're not alone. Last week i texted Chase a picture of the towel bar that Miles had ripped out of the wall (spiderman swinging on it, of course). I said something to the effect of, "That kid is lucky I'm not a spanker. I'll keep working on the yelling."
And I've informed my children LOADS of times that, "If you don't like to hear mommy yell, you have to RESPOND to the first 20 times I ask you in my nice voice."
There's just only so much a mom can do, seriously.
Also too? IwanttoeatTyforbreakfast.