I’d like to welcome Samantha from Multiple Mayhem Mama. She is a fellow Blog Frog Friend & she writes this really awesome posts about issues facing mothers today. A great post of hers is her latest about the Top 10 Tips for Dining Out with Small Children.
Trapped By a Toddler
I was trapped by a toddler the other night.
My incarceration consisted of equal parts Dora, equal parts Disney.
My son was my oppressor.
Doing “hard time” with my toddler, I sat on my bed, silently, hoping that my compliance would buy me an early release for “good behavior.”
No such luck.
Doing time with a tyke consists of being barricaded by a body perhaps a quarter of your size but quadruple your resolve. In my case, my son Erik, aged two, had a plan and I was part of it. That I had not agreed in advance to this occurrence was of no consequence to my child. Mom got no special privileges.
So what brought on this detention?
Teething, canine teeth, to be specific, with a healthy dose of exhaustion. The latter will make an already cranky child an unyielding and stoic warden indeed.
Every evening the routine goes something like this:
1) Bathe the twins
2) Dry them off and put them in their sleepers
3) Give them oatmeal to help them sleep to make sure they’re nourished for the evening, just in case they didn’t eat enough dinner
4) Give them a full bottle of warm milk to help them sleep, rock them down and put them into their cribs
Simple, right? Well not this time. One of the two had a mind of his own and when I tried to put him in his crib he screamed to high heaven. The back and forth between his room, me, our bedroom and his dad’s arms got real tired, real quick. Finally, (foolishly) I thought, I’ll watch a little TV with him in our bedroom and he’ll calm down, enough for me to put him to sleep.
Those were famous last thoughts as the moment I put him on the bed and flicked on the television, there was no turning back. Any attempt to cross the threshold towards freedom was met by not only resistance but also out-and-out defiance (and screaming – lot’s of it).
So having lived to tell about incarceration by an imp, I have put together a list for all of you moms out there who might find yourself in a similar predicament. Here it is:
The Top Five Ways of Escaping Incarceration By A Teething Toddler
1) Advil, Tylenol or Tempra – Choose your poison and administer before it’s time to put Johnny or Janie down. You will thank me for this.
2) A warm bath and soothing music – Along with the medicine before bed, get your toddler nice and tired. This way, they won’t have much energy to scream or commit Acts of Civil Disobedience
3) Use Your Allies – Like dad, grandma or an older sister or brother. How about a close friend or trusted babysitter? Mix up your routine and don’t always be the one to put Johnny or Jane to bed. That way he/she won’t scream their head off if you’re not around one night, or if they try to trap you in the bedroom to prevent you from escaping.
4) Position yourself – Between the door and the toddler. Not the other way around, like I did the other night. Have your ally ready to take over for the second shift of “Operation Bedtime.”
5) Get Ready to Rumble – Be prepared to endure some level of resistance which may take the form of screaming. Very loud and prolonged screaming. It might be difficult to listen to but with toddlers, it’s often a case of “who blinked” and they are testing you to see what you will do. Think of a stare-down contest – they want you to capitulate. Be strong, don’t give in (unless you absolutely have to) and invest in earplugs for a day (or two). It may save you from later instances of being the ward of a jailer who has no teeth – literally.
Samantha Kemp-Jackson writes a blog from her perspective of being a frazzled mom of 5,000 children. Her humorous take on family life can be seen at Multiple Mayhem Mama.