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Void

This was taken in summer 2011, when I was pregnant.
Hence the rolls and my "I don't care" attitude towards 'em. ;)

Yesterday was one month. My Daddy's departure from this world is still something I am coming to terms with, and some days it feels new and raw and profoundly sad, while other days, I don't even register the reality or remember. It's a strange new version of life that I'm getting used to, and while I am mostly okay, there are brief moments when the pangs of grief are intense and overwhelming.

But one thing I've noticed is that, as I mourn, I find myself uninspired to write. The catharsis that was his eulogy (which I was blessed with the honour of composing and delivering) seems to have left me with a void, as though nothing I could write now would have any significance or importance relative to that piece.

Hence the absence.

But I am not loquacious for nothing, so here I am, forcing myself to commit to the Web some version of my thoughts and musings, even if they do seem trivial and so incredibly unimportant in the big scheme of things.

*****
NAUGHTY BY NATURE
Little L is starting to test limits and boundaries and exert her will. I'd say that it was an intentional attempt to engage me in a power struggle and force me to show my Alpha dog status as her mom, but all of the research points to neurological development. It's not her desire to push my buttons; it's her lower brain taking over for a still-developing higher brain. Nature. Alternatively, from a Christian perspective, it is her fleshly state showing its propensity to sin, even if it's not an "intentional" desire to rebel. Nature. And so, I take a gentle (but mostly firm) approach to my girl, erring on the side of grace and making great effort to ensure that her emotional love tank is full to the brim, because I continue to hold to the position that discipline works best in the context of attachment, and any form of discipline that serves to alienate or separate her from me will be less effective in the long run than a grace-filled, compassionate one.  One of my former administrators (principals) once said to me, in my first year of teaching, "[The students] won't care how much you know until they know how much you care." I'm sure he cribbed that from somewhere, but this little truth nugget has been tucked in my pocket ever since, and I have never in my years of teaching found it to be false.

*****
SLEEP CHOOSE-YOUR-OWN-ADVENTURES
In recent weeks, I've noticed a pattern with Little L's sleep. If she wakes up anytime after 8:30, it is best to let her skip her nap and go down earlier in the evening, even if it means that she is almost guaranteed to wake up again sometime between midnight and 4:00am. This also usually results in her taking a short nap three hours later, which results in a post-8:30 wake-up time. See the pattern yet? A wake-up prior to 8:30 usually results in a nap sometime between 1:00-3:00, lasting about 1.5 hours. Then, if a wind-down routine includes a nice warm bath, there is a hope that Little L will be asleep before midnight. Her nighttime slumber is only about 8.5-10 hours these days, netting her a total of about 10-11 hours overall.  The worst thing? A nap that begins after 4:00pm and lasts more than an hour!

*****
POO TALK
Little L has started initiating going to the potty, although she is most consistent in the mornings and moreso with pees than poos. Overall, however, I'd say that we will be doing this dance for a while, because it's one of those two-steps-forward-one-step-back kinds of things where she will have a couple of really good days, and then one day she will decide not to "make yellow pee and make brown poo" on the potty at all. I'm not frustrated though, since in my mind I didn't expect her to potty train until closer to 36 months, and she's only 25 months right now. I have, however, already stocked up on panties in the event that she wakes up one day and it all "clicks." ;)

*****
TECH THOUGHTS?
Here's a HuffPo piece on why handheld devices should be banned for all kids under the age of 12. As you know, Little L owns her own iPad Mini, and has "unlimited" access to it (although we usually only give it to her when she asks for it, and when she plays with it she is given time limits and then she moves on to real toys and activities). She has also recently started a love affair with Netflix, namely Super Why (specifically, the Rapunzel episode) and Curious George (only one episode -the On Time one) and of course, Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood. While I do think the TV viewing is getting a little out of hand, I am also indebted to Super Why because watching it on the TV at the dentist's office was what kept my over-tired, teething, spirited child from biting off the hygienist's hand and having a meltdown. Plus, Little L does know all of her letters and can sight-identify several words, and she is learning some great social and emotional strategies to handle things like when Hubbs and I are off on a date, or trying new foods, or handling anger, or learning to share, or helping .... you get the picture.  So, what are your thoughts on this opinion piece?


Comments

Oh, Mrs L. It was such a wonderful surprise to see your post in my inbox. Immidiately seeing the photo of you and your father brought tears to my eyes. I cannot even imagine how profound this loss has been for you. But please know, while your word and writing seem trivial, to your fans your words are so important. And years from now, your writing will mean so much to Little Loquacious, and even her Little Ls. I am so thankful you forced yourself to write, because its so important to so many.

Second. We are right there with you on the testing boundaries, potty training two steps forward one back. Oyr sleeping appears to be OK, but it's day two of US Daylight Saving, so... I'll report back.

And last, Even though I too posted a humor piece on not giving a toddler a phone on both my blog and the HuffPo... I thin the apps available to our toddlers today are FABULOUS! Ollie and fully count to 10 and say his ABC's and colors at 25 months old. I attribute this in part to those fun learning apps. If you are handing over the tablet as a full-time babysitter, then shame. But if the iPad is a supplement to interactive hands on experiences and classic parent/teacher taught learning, then I say GREAT!
mitzerella said…
this is the highlight of my day, "discipline works best in the context of attachment, and any form of discipline that serves to alienate or separate her from me will be less effective in the long run than a grace-filled, compassionate one."

i remember reading your dad was in palliative care? i hope he was a comfortable until the end.

as for tech, i banned the iPad from Max because he wanted to watch truck videos non stop...all i heard was, iPad! iPad! i also didn't like how the bright screen was affecting his sleep. I'm definitely a believer in the capabilities of apps but everyone i know before my sons generation grew up fine sans internet let alone portable electronics. one day for sure, i definitely won't turn my back away from technology.
Mrs. Loquacious said…
Awww love you much, April! Xoxo!! And love watching Ollie grow up :)
Mrs. Loquacious said…
Thanks Mitzi!! xoxo
Dad didn't even make it to palliative; he was still in pulmonary waiting for a bed to open up when he passed. It was the best most peaceful departure we could have hoped for, but unfortunately, none of us got to say goodbye while he was still conscious :(

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