Terrified of Three…

Everyone says that 2 is the age to dread. They aren’t called The Terrible Twos for nothing, am I right?
But lately…I’ve been hearing a lot about the number 3…about how many parents think that 3 is the worst age, even worse than 2. 

Nolan was, more or less, a pretty awesome 2 year old. He threw the occasional temper tantrum but it was nothing that I couldn’t handle. In fact, I mostly laughed at him because they were rather ridiculous and over very quickly. He’d always say “sorry mommy” afterward too.
But lately…I’m noticing a whole new side to Nolan, and it’s a little scary and very overwhelming!
Lately, his temper tantrums are epic. Like when we were at the hospital a week ago, and he just wouldn’t listen to us at all. He kept taking off, screaming loudly, and being flat out rude. He was even kicking and hitting! I tried my best to tell him off and correct the behavior but he just wasn’t having it.
I knew he wasn’t listening and I knew that I wasn’t getting through to him.

Same happened on Wednesday, when we went to play group. He threw epic tantrums over everything. He wanted to go into a room that we don’t play in at play group, I said no and tried to re-direct him. Melt down. He wanted to play with Mr and Mrs Potato Head, but the EYC workers had moved them to a new location so he couldn’t. Epic melt down. He didn’t want to have a snack when it was snack time. Epic melt down
I couldn’t get through to him. He wouldn’t stop screaming when I tried to talk to him or put him on a time out. I was mortified. He doesn’t usually act that way at play group.
Usually he’s well behaved and kind.
My first reaction is to remove him completely from the situation. If he doesn’t listen after several speaking to’s, it’s time to go.
However…I’m pretty sure that’s what he wanted. He kept screaming about Toy Story, and going home.
I let him have his melt downs and we stayed for gym, I knew he’d benefit in the long run from going to the gym and burning off steam…
And frankly, I’m tired of watching Toy Story!

 So, what do you do in instances like that? When you know you’re just not getting through to your toddler? 
Nolan will be three on April 23rd and I’m pretty nervous. I love this age, I love how independent he is and I love watching him use his imagination…
The other day, he came downstairs from quiet time and told me “OH NO! There’s a monster in my room Mommy! AHH!” and then ran away haha…
{He doesn’t know what a monster is yet, therefore he isn’t scared of them. He just knows that you run from them…one of the play group kids taught him that}
When watching Toy Story, he’ll act like a toy and fall down to the ground whenever Andy comes. It’s adorable {and part of the reason why I somewhat tolerate Toy Story viewings}.

So, this age does have a lot of fun perks…but the temper tantrums are just…gah
Especially when it feels like nothing that worked before works now. You know? 
Like before, time outs were enough. A stern talking to in public worked well too. But now he basically laughs at me, or he screams even louder….
I’ve tried postponing the stern talking to until after he’s had his meltdown, but then he says “okay Mommy, sorry Mommy” but I don’t really feel like he grasps it because it just happens again a few moments later?

Meal times are still driving me absolutely batshit insane.
He argues every meal time. He puts up a fight every meal time.
No matter what I cook him, he complains that it’s “ew yucky!”
Even on the “anything” nights where I give him a can of ravioli (yeah, I know, bad mom award), he does it.
I used to love anything nights, and ravioli.
His go to, will eat almost every time foods are grilled cheese sandwiches and mac and cheese.
Obviously he can’t eat that every night.
People keep telling me “it’s just a phase!” but this has been carrying on for so long now, that I really don’t think it’s a phase at all.

I was gonna write that we had bloodwork done for Nolan to just see if he had any allergies that made eating difficult, and that we had an appointment coming up…
But than I realized I totally missed the appointment.
Mother of the year.
When Nolan was sick for several days, it totally threw me off my A-game.
I’ll have to call back on Tuesday.

In other news, I have no idea what I’m doing for his 3rd birthday.
In fact, I can barely even wrap my head around the fact that I’ll have a three year old by the end of this month….
I’m thinking just a BBQ with hot dogs and burgers and cake…
Nothing too big, just quiet and intimate?
I’d love to pick up a Toy Story cake but honestly, I don’t think we have the money for another cake.
We’ll be getting one this weekend, and when we go visit my family down south…
So I think I’m just going to bake him a kitty cat cake when we celebrate as a family of four.

Birthdays are always extra expensive around here, what with travel costs to see family and all that…
I’d love to take Nolan somewhere special, just him and Matt and I, but I’m going to have to wait until Archer is no longer nursing.
He’s just too dependent on me.
This summer we’ll be going to the Peterborough zoo a lot, I hear it’s awesome for young kids – and for parents, since it’s free admission.  


About J.C. Hannigan

25. Mother. Wife. Lover of words. Weaver of stories. My first book, Collide, is available in e-book for Amazon Kindle and Kobo.
This entry was posted in frustration, momlems, N, parenthood, toddlerhood. Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Terrified of Three…

  1. Shannon says:

    Can I recommend a fantastic book on parenting? It has absolutely changed my approach and I WISH I would have read it when my kids were younger like yours are. I think it could be helpful with some of the issues you are dealing with. It's called “Unconditional Parenting” by Alfie Kohn. Seriously amazing.

  2. We've had a really rough couple of weeks here too. Things were going so good for like a month so I was foolish enough to think that maybe we were through the terrible-insert-age-here. I've been really frustrated because Landon's just been such a grump in general, hitting his sister, he threw a fit in Dollarama the other day and it was so embarrassing. And food??? FORGET IT. I gave up on that long ago, and that's why Landon has a doctor's appointment on Monday so we can hopefully find a vitamin he'll take. In Landon's case I KNOW he doesn't have an allergy or food aversion, he's just being difficult. It's insanely frustrating. When I tell Landon to do something this is what I get 90% of the time lately, “NO I'M NOT!!!!” I have absolutely no idea what to do except give time outs and take things away. Maybe I need to check out the book Shannon recommended too. I think being with family for Nolan's birthday will make his special day wonderful. You don't need to have a big, extravagant birthday party. I know I'm not. We're doing bbq'd hot dogs, hamburgers, I'm making Mickey Mouse cupcakes myself. Same goes for any party decor. It's mostly stuff I'm making myself with things I already have at home. Good luck with Nolan, and wish me the same with Landon.

  3. jessi ♥ says:

    I will have to look into it! Thanks!

  4. jessi ♥ says:

    Landon and Nolan would be best, non-eating friends HAHHA! No seriously though, this sucks. I LOVE food, I wish my kid loved food too.

    I can't wait to read that book. I'm really hoping it will help haha! I'm gonna check Coles. I give Nolan the Disney chew vitamins.

    I also can't wait to see pictures of Landon's party!

  5. 3 is WAY harder than two, because they realize the power of negotiation. Three year-olds are smart in a terrifying way. Stay strong girl! And consistent. Because they remember EVERYTHING!

  6. Oh, but I should also say there's a cognition level that's more fun than with 2 year olds. So it's a give and take. Three year-olds can do more and understand more, so that's kind of fun!

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