Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Sneaky Jealousy

Stinky has been great about Rotten. He adores him. He wants to love on him all the time. Somedays it makes me crazy, especially the weekend we all had a nasty virus and Rotten wanted to be held by me and only me, all day long. I'd hear things like "Mommy, please put down Rotten and come see this," frequently, and I realized that jealousy has started to set in.

It tears my heart right in two. He's good about being patient with it, most of the time. He's become such a big boy- the potty training is done, he can dress himself, and entertain himself for longer periods than before. On one hand, that's great. On the other, it's easy to slip into the habit of letting the him play all day and at the end, realize that he hasn't gotten the quality or quantity of attention he wants, and that I want to give him. The other day, after WBH returned from work, and Rotten was asleep, I put my 'stop, drop, and roll' policy into play, and found Stinky in the playroom. We read, played 'Aliens versus Pirates,' and created a puppet show about Stinky saving his family from a dinosaur. He soaked up the individual attention, and was glowing. And the guilt hit me hard.

Since then, I've planned a list of projects for us to do through the end of the month, so that he always gets one-on-one time with me while we work on an art project or cook together. We've implemented a daily routine with planned story times and Stinky-Mama time, and it's helped with the acting out that I believe is coming from jealousy.

My friend at the Unlikely Rebel Mama wrote a great post about making the adjustment from one child to two, and balancing the attention. She's a few months ahead of me on this one, and her advice is so great and sound- I know I needed it.


Elizabeth said...

We have a book about easy little daily "miracles" or activities that you can do with your child each day, I'll have to look up the title for you. I'm glad that some mamma time is helping.

Melissa said...

You are doing such a good job! I have been also been struggling with giving the three kids the attention they need and often at the end of the day I feel guilty because it feels like somebody (too often Little Man because babies are so time consuming and Kiwi demands attention) didn't get enough mama time.