I Want to Feel Happy

The more Bubba talks the more he frightens me.
Not in the  call is coming from inside the house kind of frighten, but the if he realizes his power we will all be in trouble frightened.

Exhibit A:
Bubba does not like being corrected. Honestly, who does?
But sometimes in toddlerhood, one must be told not to dump Duplo blocks on the dog. It happens.

Bubba’s response is to pout, if you’ve been here for a while, we’ve talked about pouting, that’s not the issue here. Bubba now knows the difference between feeling happy and feeling sad. Once he’s pouted and he knows you’re paying attention he makes a request, one tiny request.
“Mommy, I want to feel happy.”
Ugh, dagger, right to the core.
But wait, that’s not all.
Join me:

“Mommy, I want to feel happy.”
You want to be happy, Buddy? Okay. How can you be happy?
Notice I don’t ask “How can I make you happy” big nugget of info here. As his parent, it is not my job to make him happy. It’s my job to keep him safe, help him be healthy and provide the necessary things for him to learn to be successful and a productive part of society, but overall his emotions are his own. If he constantly looks to me for his happiness he will struggle as he grows. Picked that one up along the way. (Thanks, Mom!)
Second nugget, don’t take advice from people on the internet. Kidding…kind of. Some of us think we know what we’re doing but really parenting is what works for you and the betterment of your family.

Ahh, but of course, Bubba had an answer to “How acn you be happy?” What did he say? You ask.
“I can have candy to be happy.” Complete with, tiny voice, puppy eyes, and the slow pleading gaze. The trifecta, this kid is good.
Oh, candy will help you be happy? I don’t think so. I think maybe making better choices and a hug can make you feel happy. Why don’t we try that?
I can feel him sigh.
We end with a hug and no candy at 9am. Point for Mommy.

From this experience we have learned:
1) He’s always thinking one step ahead. I’m going to need my super-thinking-cap in the future.
2) He’s sensitive to his feelings and knows Mommy is too.
3) We’re going to have to stay on our toes.

Be Great,
M

10 thoughts on “I Want to Feel Happy

  1. Love this one, Meg! I like how you verbalized that it’s not a parent’s job to make the kids happy. I think people really get lost on that one and go right for the friend zone with their kids, presenting a host of issues throughout childhood and later in life. Well said advice and realizations here!

  2. Bubba is a smart kid! While I don’t have kids, I will say the kids I babysit know how to play on my emotions. They know I want them to be happy and to regard me as “the best babysitter” and sometimes they do stuff I know they know is wrong. I feel like they’re just trying to see if I will say anything.

  3. Aww, he sounds so smart! We’re learning about this in grad school now, how fast toddlers adapt, especially to the reactions and facial expressions of those around them and especially to parents or people of significant importance. This is the best time, to be able to observe the growth!

    michenn

  4. I always love your updates on Bubba! Your style of writing is very engaging and I also really appreciated your point that his emotions are his own and if he looks to you for happiness, he’ll struggle as he grows because it is so true. I think sometimes parents forget to remember that. Great job, honey.

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