It's like the age old question, but different. If you scream in your house but no one seems to hear you, did you scream?
I screamed at Hannah yesterday. I never knew I was a screamer. I never wanted to be a screamer. And now, I will not BE a screamer. "Why" you may ask did I scream? Read on...
"Hannah, stop pushing Luke while he's running, he could fall and hurt himself."
"Hannah, please stop doing that to Luke."
"Hannah, I said, PLEASE stop dragging Luke."
"Hannah, he does not LIKE when you do that to him."
"HANNAH, LISTEN TO ME!!! YOU ARE NOT LISTENING TO ME! STOP. DOING. THAT. TO. LUKE!"
Hannah: "Mommy, well, you don't need to yell."
Me: "Apparently, I DO need to yell because you do not LISTEN!"
Hannah: "Well, I can still HEAR you without you yelling. There really is no need to yell at me."
Me: "YOU NEED to listen when I tell you you are going to hurt your brother."
Hannah: "I'm just saying you don't need to yell. Geez."
So, I guess I have not instilled that fear in Hannah that when I raise my voice I mean business. My dad used to have a "look". If I saw that look, I ran for the trees (or is it hills? I didn't really have hills where I grew up, but I did have big forests). He was SCARY when he got mad (in the oh-dear-lord-please-don't-yell-at-me sort of way not the uh-oh-I-may-get-hit sort of way) and I didn't (or tried not to) mess with it. I think Hannah was "this" close to laughing at me when I yelled. Her eyes got a little larger but she was NOT scared at. all. This did not do much for my "I'm mommy and I'm in charge" ego. Luke, on the other hand, was NOT quite sure what to make of his mommy becoming a bit of a monster right before his (Extremely Large) eyes.
I hated yelling at her. Especially since it did nothing. I guess I could have grabbed her by the arm and MADE her listen to me but that's not my style either. But, I'm like a broken record. I'm so worn out by the end of the day from sheer boredome from the repetition. I probably use 20 words throughout each day repeated over and over and over. And I think I hear 10 words over and over and over. Here is my list of words:
From my mouth:
- Eat/Finish (your breakfast, your lunch, your dinner, more, faster)
- Did you (brush your teeth, wash your hands, wipe good, hear me)
- Say (thank you, please, excuse me, what I think you said?)
- Use (your words, your napkin, soap, nice words, a fork)
- Sit down (in the cart, in your carseat, now)
From Hannah's mouth:
- I want (a drink, a snack, another story, Ellie, to sit on your lap, for you to carry me, to watch TV, to stay up all night)
- I don't want (you to brush my hair, Luke to ruin my work, my hair up, any veggies, to wear shoes, to go to bed, to throw up)
- Mommy? Mommy? Mommy?
- Am I going to throw up from that?
- Are there germs on that?
- I have a wedgie
- I need (an icepack, you to help me wipe, a Bandaid)
And these lists, that make me feel like I'm living in Ground Hog's Day, make me want to scream. And so I did. But it didn't work. And I'm not sure what will work but at least my neighbors won't have to get involved.