“I went through the usual stages: imp, rascal, scalawag, whippersnapper.” ― George Carlin, Brain Droppings
If you follow my blog or my Facebook page, you might have been able to tell we've been going through a rough behavioral patch with Maeve lately. It's been about three or four months, at least, of pretty regular defiant actions, yelling, hitting us, lots of time-outs, cancelling fun events because the child was being a poop, etc. Three is not a fun age, really, as far as we can tell. It's like two, but with just a big more brains and planning behind it.
I hesitate to speak these words in case I jinx it, but as I knock vigorously on wood, I will state that things seem to be getting better. Sleep patterns are in place and working for the moment, attitudes are shifting more quickly from anger to calm, and there is definitely a dearth of the day-long-tantrums that were plaguing our lives just a few months ago.
It seems like part of the improvement stems from better language processing and use. Lately she's done much better to, as we always plead, use her words instead of just freaking out and yelling, which is a huge step forward. And it just feels like she's acting more like a person than a tiny, unreasonable terrorist.
So at every step, I try to praise these new improvements in behavior, thanking her for using her words to tell me what's wrong, appreciating when she can turn her mood around and get calm, reminding her that she's growing and able to do more big-girl things because of her good behavior. Oh, please let the end be in sight, as I would really like my sweet girl back.