Tuesday, August 7, 2007

i might be the good cop, afterall.

Before my husband left for the Sandbox, he recorded a DVD of him reading W's favorite books. Since CB doesn't have a favorite book yet, because I'm a horrible mother and don't read to her, she will have to learn to love W's favorite books because she'll be watching her daddy read them every night for the next 15 months.

The first time I played the DVD for W, he got really excited because he thought daddy was home. He ran to the TV with his arms up, asking daddy to hold him. When he realized daddy wasn't actually here, he got really upset and angry. He had the same reaction the next few times we watched it, but he eventually got it that it's a movie and daddy can't hold him, just like the Cars don't come out of the TV so he can play with them. Ka Chow.

Yesterday, W was having a particularly hard day: throwing things, hitting, screaming and not eating because he had been strapped to his stroller for 4 hours while we were at the health clinic, trying to work out CB's lack of weight gain issues. I was getting desperate and didn't have a lot of energy. Have you ever tried keeping a 2 year old monster content in his stroller for 4 hours? It's exhausting. As a last resort, I turned on daddy's DVD and the second daddy came on the screen, W calmed down and stopped his bad behavior. I don't know if it was the distraction or the fact that daddy is a better disciplinarian than mommy is and W knew he was being watched. But the bad behavior stopped and I got my happy boy back.

Later that night, before bed, he was cranky again and I turned on the DVD for a bedtime story and his demeanor changed again. He wasn't cranky anymore and just sat there and watched. Daddy sang the bedtime song and W said "night night dada" and went to the stairs to go to bed. All by himself, without being told or asked.

I'm not sure this is what my husband intended the DVD to be for... I wonder what Nanny 911 would say about the implications of this... do I care? Not really, as long as this is working for us right now. Don't worry, I won't be using daddy's movie as a disciplinary or scare tactic. That would be wrong and stupid. I went to enough of my psychology classes to learn that.

This morning I asked W where his daddy was and he ran to the TV. He thinks his father lives in the TV. That's almost as good as last year when he thought the word for phone was "daddy". If you asked him where his daddy was, he would run and get the phone. Although, he might think daddy lives in the phone now, too. When we did get to talk to M a few days after he left, W tried to give the phone "high 5's". My poor child.

In lieu of birthday and Christmas gifts, you can make contributions to his therapy fund.


Margaret said...

I love your blog, Jo! You are one strong mama! :)

Jessica Ryan said...

Will you accept blank tapes to be recorded on since I think W still has a few years before he'll be needing therapy?

Imcombobulated said...

Now that's not funny. That got me all teary. Poor, sweet boy.

Andrea said...

Now that you mention it, I used to use Cali's daddy video the same way. If she woke up cranky from a nap or just anytime she was cranky I'd press play and she'd magically relax, watch Daddy, and be in a better mood the rest of the day! Thanks Daddy : )