He turned 6 two weeks ago and although I didn't expect a magical transformation overnight, I think maybe I hoped for a magical transformation overnight.
He's such a mixed bag. He's incredibly sweet and curious, as smart as I was when I was probably 10, and has a sense of the world beyond what has been taught to him and seems to come from nowhere. He also is as moody as a freaking 15 year old girl, is effected by the weather, his hunger, his sleep, and his familiarity with what is going on in the current situation. William is not terribly hard to make happy but it's incredibly difficult to keep him happy. He's always interested in what's next. That's a bit hard to explain but it's the only way I can put it into words.
Today we spent the afternoon at a beautiful park in the bay area for Chris's fire department's annual family picnic. It's really geared for the kids and between the food, the sack race, the egg toss, the tug-of-rope, and the prizes, all three kids had a blast. Until... we were headed home and William dropped one piece to one of the prize toys he'd won. That's all it took for him to lose his shit. That was about 30 minutes into our drive home. Given another 20 minutes in the car I was ready to lose my shit, too. The thing is that after all of this experience with him and his moods, I have learned there is a certain way to handle him. He isn't beyond recovery if it's handled in a certain way. Here is my issue with it all: loving him out of these moods is effective sometimes but handling it any other way backfires every time. It's such a fine line. I won't tolerate enabling him or being all foo foo about it to then encourage the behavior but by doing the whole "knock it off" method seems to exacerbate it 10 fold.
Alltosay, it's exhausting. I'm tired of it. I feel badly for him that he gets that way. I pray for continued patience because it's getting harder for me to love him out of these moods as he gets older.
I feel like, as his mom and his ultimate teacher, I have done a good job of giving him the tools to deal with his emotions. By that I mean I've done what I know how to do. I am confident that at this stage in his life that his toolbox is full. I also think that Chris and I have done (and continue to do) a good job of teaching him how to use those tools when we are not around. God forbid he get hungry, hot, frustrated, bored, or angry with something while away from us. Good luck, my friend! People aren't going to put up with that bullshit behavior/attitude. I have explained all of that to him and he gets it. I'm just not sure that his 6 years of emotional maturity can handle it all yet.
It's a process. A daily process. I'll continue to provide him the tools and the ways in which he can use them to help him deal with his moods but the process of doing so is beyond draining.
I just want my smart, sweet boy to be happy and to be able to remain happy despite any outside influences. It doesn't really sound like too much to ask but it's an impossible wish to be granted at this point. We'll continue to work on it.