Noodle Wrangling

If you were my breast, you'd have seen a lot of this today.

If you were my breast, you’d have seen a lot of this today.

It seems that since embarking on the journey of homeschooling my two daughters, I have forgotten how to take care of my son. He’s now an active and very willful toddler, and I’m learning how little time we actually get to spend together. I’m learning this because when we are together, I think I suck at being the parent I want to be.

I started this week with what I thought was a great plan. It’s March break, so the girls are in a camp, hopefully making lots of local friends. I figured that since we have finally nailed the sleeping thing with Noodle, and since I would be hanging with the little dude all week, I could try to start moving towards weaning him. I wanted to start a meal strategy that I read about in a book called ‘The New Basics’ by a pediatrician named Michel Cohen. Cohen suggests limiting meals to four times a day with breakfast, lunch, snack and dinner. I thought this made sense so I decided I would start to tell Noah that he could only nurse at those times. I have a love/hate relationship with this book, so no real surprise when my baby boy thought this idea was bullshit.

Noah’s still getting teeth, and the big ones are coming in now. For those of you who don’t know, breast-feeding releases delicious chemicals that help to relieve pain. There was much screaming and many tears as I tried to make this transition to regularly scheduled feeding times today. I tried clove oil, and it didn’t seem to work one bit, though we’ve had success with it in the past. I caved. I couldn’t hold out, and everyone around me seemed to think it was a bad idea too. Especially Noah.  The result – an entire day of a baby on my breast, and some very tingly clove oil marinated nipples. I’d like to wean Noah by the summer time, but I honestly don’t know how anyone has the resolve. Feel free to post some advice, you mammas and dads who have lived through this.

Getting Noah to eat lunch was just as impossible as getting him to stop dive-bombing into my shirt. For the sake of transparency, I will admit to plunking down with him in front of our TV, then using the remote to bait him with his favourite show. For each bite, the program was un-paused. We’re supposed to be TV-free this month, but this technique was working so well. At least that’s what I thought until I realized he was taking bites, then waiting until I hit play to subtly turn his back to me and deposit the entire mushy mouthful of goo on our hand-woven carpet.

I’m in the PMS zone this week, so I was really trying to take this in stride, but was starting to feel a bit harried. I freely admit that I often sweat the small stuff. Then I attempted a poopy diaper change and realized that the nursing/feeding thing was a cakewalk compared to what I shall call the shit-flinging bucking bronco ride. He screamed, kicked and punched until Daddy came from the other room to lend a hand. Even when I tried to give him a toy to play with (read my iPhone) he tossed it aside and tried to roll away. He didn’t want to get changed, he wanted to nurse. As I’m typing this, I remember a great Mamma S strategy that involves pinning him down beneath my leg. Hind sight. (See what I did there?)

I’m not sure why he’s wanted to nurse all day. He’s not sick. Maybe it’s because it’s so novel to have me all to himself? Maybe it’s because I’m boring, and like a bad boyfriend, playing with my tits is all he can think to do to have some fun with me? Maybe it’s because every time he walked away, I was furiously trying to bang out this blog post. I’m feeling like I need a lot more practice with Noodle-wrangling. I’m also feeling like I need a two-hour nap. How does my nearly seventy-year-old mother keep up with him?

Dear readers, I welcome any and all suggestions for amusing a seventeen-month-old, without the television. I want this week to be fun, and I want it to be the bonding experience I was hoping for.  I advise you to expect minimal posting from me this week.

Although, the girls are home now and all three kids are playing delightfully in the family room as I ‘hide’ in the classroom.

Hmmm….I wonder how much writing I can do?

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4 Comments

  1. Mama C
    March 10, 2014 / 6:06 pm

    Nekky pointed out that my not-so-successful mealtime strategy was courtesy of Bringing Up Bebe by Pamela Drukerman. Thanks daddy.

  2. Rachelle
    March 10, 2014 / 6:50 pm

    Your nearly seventy year old Mom loves to have him with her. Yes he is getting to be a handful but whenever I can hold that little guy, I enjoy every minute of it. No one said it is an easy job being a parent but it is oh so worth the work you need to put into it. I say, you are doing a great job and I wish that I would have had more patience when you and your brother were small. Working outside the home and looking after meals, laundry, cleaning just did not leave much time for much bonding with my little ones.

    Love,
    Mom

    • Mama C
      March 13, 2014 / 2:49 pm

      Thanks for the great suggestions. I’m learning that letting my little guy take the lead always ends up being super fun. The other day was super mild and all of the snow melted away, so we suited up and splashed around in puddles. Sometimes it’s that easy!