The other day we had one of ‘those’ days where ‘The baby’ drove me crazy. Yes… when your child get’s demoted to ‘The baby’ you know there’s trouble.
Feeling angry at the baby
I went to the effort of making her a new meal of chickpeas, carrot, courgette and coriander. I was quite excited by this as it was a new taste for Georgia. It was met with floods of tears over the prospect of eating such a monstrosity. She barely even tried it. My heart sank but I soldiered on with the effort by trying a different tactic. When I let her hold the spoon with the concoction balancing precariously on the end, she quickly splatted it on the floor… seemingly out of spite.
The next spoonful was destined for the wall… still being met with tears and pursed lip as the spoon was still in her vicinity.
I felt disgruntled by this but decided to move on. We moved onto rice pudding so that she could have something that she enjoys as my latest meal was obviously not going to work. She ate a few spoons but then thought it was a great idea to grab it in her fingers (a hard thing to do as it’s very goopy) and smoosh it everywhere.
Yet more tears for no apparent reason this time other than because she had smooshed it everywhere. She wasn’t tired and had a clean nappy… she was just in one of ‘those’ moods, brought on by what was now a nightmare mealtime.
Embracing it… harder than it looks
Although I fully appreciate that she needs to learn and that I need to embrace the process, I’m not saying that it’s easy to do.
There’s only so many times you can say in a chipper voice “oh no, it’s gone on the floor, silly Georgia” or “Please don’t bash mummy with the spoon”. Quite frankly, I am not Mary Poppins (in the Disney sense) and have never pretended to be. I’m not a model mum, but I am a real one. There is only so much that a person can put a rose tint on and any parent that says that they have never been frustrated or angered by their children learning to eat (or not eating) is either a saint or lying out of their arse.
At this point, I was feeling frustration and a bubble of anger that just brimmed over the edge and ebbed toward my extremities.
Falling out with a 6 month old
Instead of embracing the rage, I decided to fall out with Georgia. Let’s face it, I chose the right option. She may not have known it, but I just needed to walk away and put myself in timeout.
Hubby then came downstairs to helpfully tell me that she’s only 6 months old and doesn’t understand what she’s doing. But that just doesn’t cut it sometimes. Regardless of whether she knows what she’s doing, it doesn’t stop the situation from being any less frustrating or anger-inducing. It doesn’t stop my need to calm down from the situation.
That doesn’t make me a bad parent, just an honest one. Admitting that she drives me to the brink sometimes and that I need to have some alone time is my way of coping with her all consuming nature of being a baby that seems to devour my every waking thought.
It doesn’t mean that I love her any less, but it does mean that she is a pain in the bum sometimes. Giving some distance is the safest therapy for both of us and means that we can get on with the next day’s adventures.
So although I’ll be embracing the mess that comes with her learning, I also know that sometimes it’s okay to feel angry. But that the best way of channelling that anger is to walk away for a bit (as long as she’s safe!).