Thursday, January 22, 2009

May I Have Your Attention Pees

No doubt, you are all on pins and needles anxiously awaiting an update on the madness that I had been living in (and brought you all into) following last week's post. No doubt.

Well folks, I am pleased to say that I managed to get the Biscuit's nighttime routine back into a pattern of normalcy. Okay. To be honest, that's a lie... a terrible, terrible lie. Truth is, the terrible 2s have hit home hard in Biscuitville and I am almost out of methods and tricks to try to tame this child of mine.

I did make some quick decisions to attempt to get the random acts of spiteful peeing under control. First, I removed the Biscuit's new big-boy bed from his room (leaving only his crib, with the rail removed). Second, I removed the Biscuit's nightlight from the room. I didn't initially plan on removing the light, but his repeated attempts to "play" with the light instead of going to sleep forced my hand on the issue (as it presented a danger).

As if by magic, out of the darkness came some peace. These removals did help reduce the 2-hour nightly drama (with at least 3 sheet changes and countless trips to the potty) to 15 minutes and 1 sheet change. The 1 remaining sheet change is still his effort to maintain control in this relationship, and he's still peeing out of pure spite. Need more?

On Tuesday of this week, everything within a 30-mile radius of where we live shut down due to ice and snow (maybe 3 inches). It's ridiculous, I know, but it's how things go in the South where the roads are not constructed to minimize ice and snow effects and where cities don't have adequate equipment to clear and prevent the effects of the snow and ice (not to mention folks just don't know how to drive in the weather). So, the Biscuit's daycare was closed for the day which meant that he had an extra day at home with mommy.

I, of course, had to take the day off from work (where I could normally just work from home in spite of the weather) but since the Biscuit was here, there was no way I could responsibly work AND supervise a 2-year old. Case in point...

While I did officially take the day off, there was an important conference call that I needed to attend. I let my boss know I was taking a vaca day, but that I was calling in (in 'listen-only' mode so my teammates wouldn't have to listen to a screaming toddler). Towards the end of the call I needed to offer some comments, so I left the Biscuit in the den to watch Cars on DVD and walked into another room to give a 5-minute update on the call. The Biscuit was not pleased to lose mommy's full attention.

When I returned to the den, the Underpants Gnomes had shown up (in the middle of the day no less!) and stolen his undies and pants. The Biscuit stood on my couch in all of his glory and, as I entered the room, his smile changed to a smirk.

Time slowed for a moment as I leaped toward him yelling, "Nooooooooo." but I was too late. The Biscuit proceeded to pee all over the couch... just to spite me; just to get my attention.

Well, Biscuit, you certainly got it. I may wear the pants in this family (and how I wish HE would wear his pants) but you certainly are winning the war for now. I can only hope that I figure out a new strategy to help me prevail in the end.

And of COURSE I mixed that metaphor on purpose. Don't you people know me by now?


Ellen G said...

Empty-nester,old-school mom wryly giggles.

Eli said...

Did you ever figure out a way to stop the spite peeing? My son does this in his bed when he doesn't want to take a nap. He takes off the diaper so it's nice and dry, takes of the sheets and pees directly on the mattress. He's not quite 2 and a half. It's making me crazy.

Cat Ward said...

I can't say that I solved it overnight Eli, but I did continue to discuss consequences before and after an episode... Giving an extra lovey at nap time or night time that could be taken away(I wouldn't take away his special lovey of course). I learned it truly was all about attention-getting so the calmer I reacted, if at all, helped the situation. Eventually, I said nothing, dealt with the situation in silence and it ended.

It's really hard to do that in the moment, but if you can, eventually it works. I find that it takes about 3 days for a pattern to set in with a little one and that takes patience on our end.

Good luck! (And just like the Biscuit did, yours will grow out of it)