We had a wonderful Thanksgiving last week with my mom in Missouri. The boys did great in the car, especially coming back. It's amazing to me to see as Griffin gets older how much the dynamic between he and Carter is changing....sometimes not for the better. Often, though, it is for the good. I really love seeing them love each other and on each other and miss each other when the other one isn't around. But, sometimes, they can't stand each other! Already! At age almost 6 and 2 1/2 I can see the anger and the rage!
Sibling Rivalry. Ugh. Carter has always been a little jealous of Griffin. Can't say that I blame him. Carter was the main dude for a whole three years before Griffin popped up. Then, this other kid starting getting the attention. Now that Griffin is bigger, and still awfully cute and doing awfully cute things, I can see Carter become jealous over the attention he receives. We have tried really hard to pay equal attention and have special time with Carter, but, you know, it's impossible to do everything perfectly.
It's humorous to see sometimes how much Carter will act out to get my attention. Especially if Griffin has done something new or uses new words. I mean, it's a special time. We thought it was just as special when Carter did it, it's just he doesn't remember.
But Carter still talks in baby talk sometimes or wants to crawl around like a little baby. We ignore it for the most part because that would be feeding him negative attention. I really try to point out when he is doing good things. We talk about all the things he can do that Griffin can't do.
But, that is beginning to change because Griffin is getting close to doing everything Carter can do and we can't use that anymore. Even potty training. In the next few months, Griffin (hopefully, dear Lord!) will have mastered that. Griffin will always be younger than Carter but he may not necessarily be smaller.
So, we are now faced with the conundrum of teaching our boys how to get along. I want them to learn to get along even if they disagree. But, that is a big task. Kind of like eating an elephant...you just do it one bite at a time. Several "experts" have differing opinions on how to help siblings get along, some are more promising than others.
I am encouraged to know that Greg and I don't have to be perfect. We aren't perfect and we will make mistakes. I am very encouraged to hear that people who grew up greatly disliking their siblings are now best friends with them. Others still carry hurts from painful experiences growing up with an older sibling. But, more often than not, I hear positives. I am encouraged by that.
When I get overwhelmed with the latest issue that is popping up in parenting my boys I usually deal with it one or two ways. I sit and worry and get overwhelmed more, and get anxious, then end up taking it out on the people I love. Then, I come to my senses (and the end of myself) and pray. You would think after doing this a few times that I would automatically go to prayer about it but I must be hard headed because I almost always fret and worry and try and figure it out on my own until I end up surrendering.
All the experts and books in the world cannot make me be a perfect parent. Hindsight is always 20/20. I am thankful that GOD has given me everything I need to be the best parent I can be, according to His word. If it seems like I say that a lot, well, it's because I need to be reminded of it....a lot. And when I talk to moms and hear their stories, it resonates within me that they need to hear it too.
Whatever you are dealing with, whether it be teaching kids how to get along, dealing with developmental issues with your kids, school problems, teen pregnancy. Whatever. I can tell you this. You can't fix it.
There is no amount of worrying over something, fretting, losing sleep that will help you deal with that issue any better. Like the song that Laura Story has out, called, "Blessings", sometimes those hurts and tears and sleepless nights are how God gets our attention and lets us know that He hears us. It just leads us (me) closer to the end of myself where I can say, honestly, I give up.
So instead of worrying about whether Carter and Griffin are going to get along when they are older or if we are going to be able to instill in them the ability to solve problems without hitting someone first, lol, I think I will just give it up in prayer.
What about you?