I tell you, three is hard.
Tuesday on the blog Facebook page, I shared an ecard that exemplified what I am talking about. There were a few moments with both kids in which the twos were tough, but not terrible. They were just a preparation for three.
After several tear filled tantrums yesterday, I give you three things I’ve learned about raising three-year-olds.
1. They are not babies, but still need snuggles/comfie fillers/ blankets / stuffies. We are trying to break Evan of sucking his fingers, but it is his go to comfort. Pappy asked him to stop today. We were talkkmg about it, and he even popped them in his mouth and glared toward Pappy as if to make a point. What followed was, “but I want to be a big boy, I am just sad right now”.
How often do we, even as adults, resort to our comfies? I will turn to dark chocolate, a dear friend, or even the beach when I need the feeling of it is all okay.
2. They are stronger than they think, yet less grown than they realize. Evan knocked down physical challenges today. A rock wall. A slide. A water slide. He overcame fears. But at the same time, he also thinks it is okay to dig in ant holes, fill in sink holes with toothpaste, and pour himself some hand cream while we watched tv.
I wish I could get over my fears like Evan. That slide had to look nice and big to him. Why can’t I look at a waterslide or rock wall and just do it?
3. Tantrums are a learning lesson and three is a fine time to utilize timeout. I have read mixed thoughts on when to start timeout. At two, Arianna got it. Evan took longer, but after he whipped a duck whistle toward a glass door, he knew he needed to go to timeout. “But there aren’t any steps!!!”, he wailed. This led to him going to a chair and crying, followed up by sorrys and tame moments. He got to think it through, that it was okay to cry it out sometimes but that there are consequences for our actions.
Mama’s and Daddy’s need these, too. We had us one the other night and it set us back up for success. Timeouts, tears, and time away are sometimes the very things we need.
I would spend every day learning about life from this ‘lil man! Three is definitely tough, but with enough love and patience, we will make it to Fabulous Four just fine.