My son gets so excited to see other children! Seriously giddy! He chirrups with delight. He shrieks with excitement while tightening both legs into a locked position.
Lately at some point, it results in at minimum a soft tap on the head and at full force, a bang and grab of any hair or lack there of that is accessible.
And of course I love to witness, participate, and encourage his excitement! It is actually my favorite part of toddler hood, being witness to his joy as he finds the things in life that interest him.
I must say 100 times a day with as much awe as before, "A bus!, A truck, ooh another doggie!"
Herein lies the rub.
I want him to express his feelings freely. To not hold back! To love with all his might, express his anger as strongly as he feels it, and even to cry until their are no more tears left to feel inside.
But I don't want the fallout of that expression to be the hurt and tears of another precious little baby.
I have tons of experience and training in helping children through this stage, but I have got to tell you this is where handling things as a PARENT is different.
Suddenly it is not only about being a teacher and handling an issue.
It is about:
*worrying other parents won't understand that this is very normal behavior
*knowing how it feels when your precious baby is hurt by another
*knowing that your child is curious about reactions, dominance, and how that all plays out and wanting him to get the right attitudes towards it
* not wanting my child to think I don't trust him by reacting every time he gets too close to a child, but also wanting to stop another from getting hurt (boy is that a fine line)
*making sure he has enough outlets for aggression and activity which I know to be important for children and boys especially
*wanting my precious boy to be loved by other children and adults in our lives
Boy, being a parent sure makes things a bit more complicated.
To all those whose children are getting the brunt of mine's learning curve here, we BOTH love you so much! Thanks for hanging in there with us, we are hitting lots of pillows right now!