Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Longing for Quiet

"Mommy, I want some candy!"
"Mommy, I need to go potty!"
"Mommy, I not want to watch this movie!"
"Mommy, I really, really want to go outside!"
"Mommy, I not want this lunch!"
"Mommy, I don't want to take a nap!"
"Mommy! Mommy! Mommy!"

My 3-year-old has been whining incessantly! I could take the high road. That would sound something like, "I am blessed to have the privilege to have a little girl to request things of me. There are many people out there longing for children who can't have any." Instead, I'm reminded me of the Grinch irritated with the the Whos in Whoville with all that "Noise! Noise! Noise! Noise!"

This whining has me irritated and exhausted. I'm frazzled and can't think straight. Lately, all I've been longing for is some quiet. Not just five minutes here or five minutes there. I want a good long time of quiet.

I've taken the easy way out one too many times with my middle child. Rather than hear her whine as she requests candy ten times in ten minutes before breakfast, I take on the attitude of "just take the chocolate and leave me alone already!" Yep. I've definitely contributed to this whiney behavior.

So, I've decided it's time to quit giving in. It will only be worse later if we don't get a handle on it now. Now when I hear, "Mommmmmmyyyy, I wannnnt sommmme cannnndyyy," in that sing-songy whine, I do my best to calmly respond.

"First, you have to eat some breakfast."
"But I diiid eat some breakfast!"
"You'll have to eat more than one bite."
"But I diiiid!"
"You are not having candy now."

And the whining continues... as I walk away.

I haven't give in today (yet). I've remained stern. Which brings me to our most recent encounter.

"Mommmmy, I want to have this toothpaste."
"No. You just brushed your teet."
"But I realllly wannt this toooooothpaste!" (The volume is rising quickly.)
"You may not have more toothpaste now. I'll tell you what..."

The screaming doesn't even allow me to continue. I walk over, take the toothpaste out of her hand and send her to bed. She climbs into bed screaming and throwing a tantrum. I do my best to talk calmly over her high-pitched screeching. "You may come downstairs when you are ready to say, 'Yes, Mommy. I will not scream and whine anymore." I left her room and went downstairs.

A few moments later, I realized the house was actually quite quiet. I quietly walked upstairs to check on her only to find her cuddled in her blankets on her bed sound asleep.

Peace. (Not to mention victory for me... on this battle.) It made me think of some advice my mom once gave.

"If she's crabby, give her something to eat or put her to bed."

It's good parenting advice...

even though it was advice she gave Rod about me.


  1. That soooo makes me smile. Give Tristi something to eat, or put her to bed and that will make for a Happy Tristi! That is too cute and so funny, and somewhat, sometimes true. Right?!! I hope you are getting some peace and some healthy snacks today. I'm thinking of you! Love, Me

    Oh, and of course...thanks for Blogging, I like getting my news :)

  2. Hey there! I am so right in that whine boat with you. And I have felt myself doing the same thing. Meg likes to do it when I am on the phone, I give in alot quicker when I am talking to someone.

    I enjoy reading your blogs, I can relate in so many ways. I need you as my mentor :)

    Amy Snyder

  3. Thanks to you both for your comments. I'm glad we can keep in touch through so many means these days! :)

  4. This blog made me smile too! Thank God we have so many ways to vent our frustrations, and so many people willing to listen and relate!