Sunday, October 31, 2010

SuGaR and sPiCe......

and everything nice....well most of the time!

A couple of days ago I was having a VERY difficult time with Ava. She has become a very skilled arguer at the young age of 3. Every time I told her "No" or anything to that sense, she had a completely "logical" explanation as to why she could do whatever it was I was telling her not to do.

Not only that but everything was DRAMATIC!!!!!! I know this is the way girls are, but I have not ever dealt with DRAMA at this level before. I mean seriously, I have not ever heard this child CRY so much in one day as I did that day.

Not to mention Nap Time. I really think TLC could do a show called " Nap Time Wars " or "Bed Time Wars" and make a killing off of it. I would watch it just for the security of knowing I am not alone, or to get tips even! Anyway............Ava has always been somewhat good at sleeping. Every now and then an issue will arise that we have to deal with. But on this very day when I told her it was time to take a nap ...... she looked at me and said, "Well mommy it is not dark outside." .....see "logical" excuse. Needless to say, I never convinced her that she never takes a nap when it is dark outside, she did not nap that day. Although, she stayed in her bed the whole time ( after being spanked several times) she never fell asleep.

...........So as the day progressed, unfortunately so did my frustration. Now mind you, this was a day that David was at the station so I was solely on my own for 24hrs! Typically not a big deal, Ava and I usually find plenty to do on these days, and all is usually well...........but not that day! I was the one and only "enforcer" that day .......and enforce I did, with the spanking spoon!

I really think there is nothing more discouraging than spanking your child all day, only to have her turn around and keep doing the things she is getting spankings I had to start being creative, by taking away her beloved scissors! .........yes you read that right scissors! ( they are kid friendly with a blunted tip that are only capable of cutting paper.....and sometimes not even that!) BUT Ava LOVES her scissors! She sits at her craft table for the majority of the day cutting up pieces of paper or scrap ribbon and gluing it onto paper! By the end of the day it looks like Edward Scissor Hands stopped in for a visit, but she stays busy, occupied and happy!

Taking away her scissors helped for a little while. For the remainder of the day I tried to stay strong and hold my own with her. I prayed a lot, put my face in my hands and shook my head a lot, sighed a lot, and wanted to cry a lot.....and did at one point. Yes it was bad.......especially when I had never seen this side of my child before.

The day ended, and by the end of the day I think she was so exhausted from all of the tantrums, she went right to sleep. That was a blessing, because I am not sure I could have handled much more.

Morning came and Daddy was home! .....( i think I am finally getting to the point of this story here!) I informed David of "our Day" that we had had. And of course he asked, "well, did you spank her."
"umm yes dear more times than I wanted to or can count." So we had to come up with a game plan!!! Our new game plan for that day was going to be, every battle is worth picking today.

 Our philosophy with discipline has always been " you have to learn to pick your battles." This has worked for us. Not every battle is worth fighting when it comes to kids. It does not matter to me if she wears her pink shirt or her purple shirt. We have always tried to give her a since of independence, as long as it is within reason and our approval. .......and maybe we got to a point to where we were not picking as many battles to fight as we should have, and the consequences finally came to surface.

So with Daddy being home .....we were equipped and ready, " Army Aldape" was ready to fight!

......the rest of the day happened! Ava got only one chance to do what we were asking. She was allowed NO leeway that day. By about mid day we had our sweet little Ava back! ( Daddy was the main enforcer that day!)

Looking back on this I was reminded of one of my most favorite songs " Daddy's Hands." here are some of the lyrics.

I remember Daddy´s hands, folded silently in prayer.
And reaching out to hold me, when I had a nightmare.
You could read quite a story, in the callouses and lines.
Years of work and worry had left their mark behind.
I remember Daddy´s hands, how they held my Mama tight,
And patted my back, for something done right.
There are things that I´ve forgotten, that I loved about the man,
But I´ll always remember the love in Daddy´s hands.

Daddy's hands were soft and kind when I was cryin´.
Daddy´s hands, were hard as steel when I´d done wrong.
Daddy´s hands, weren´t always gentle
But I´ve come to understand.
There was always love in Daddy´s hands.

This song has always been very near and dear to me, as it reminds me much of my own Dad. There is just something special about a little girl and her daddy. There is just something in little girls that is devastated when we know we have disappointed or upset our daddy's. I see all of this in Ava. 

It was amazing to me what a few hours of being disciplined by Daddy did for Ava, in this very phase of her little rebellious heart. I truly believe kids go through different phases. This is part of them learning how to react to the world around them. Apparently Ava had come to a point  where she needed us to pick more battles with her, because she was learning how to take advantage of the leeway we had given her.

We are still learning how challenging parenting can be, but we are thankful for the wisdom and discernment that the Lord gives us.
"He who spares the rod hates his son,
       but he who loves him is careful to discipline him."  Proverbs 13:24

"A refusal to correct is a refusal to love;
   love your children by disciplining them."  Proverbs 13:24 translated for The Message

Needless to say we still have plenty of SuGaR and sPiCe moments with this precious little girl.