DIZMOMMY > The Approval Process

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August 21, 2013

The Approval Process

Lately I've been catching Dylan looking for my reactions to things that he isn't sure about. When dad makes a crazy wild laugh and Dylan doesn't know whether to smile or cry, he looks at me to determine whether it's okay to be that loud. When Dylan is overly ambitious in his movements and then falls over he looks at me to figure out whether he's hurt or not. When I notice him doing this I immediately smile and tell him what a cutie he is and he moves on unscathed but secretly inside I think, uh-oh, I better be careful how I react toward you because you're learning from me.

On Monday I strapped Dylan in his super-seat, a small chair that has a tray of toys he can play with, while I did the dishes a few feet away from him (btw, why don't adults have a version of these?). Five minutes into my dish duty Dylan began crying and I ignored him. He continued to fuss without a cause and I turned around and sternly said, "No Dylan, stop." He did a little puppy dog face and I turned back around and continued my work. He  began fussing again so I did the same thing, "No Dylan." Round three of fussy pants was different because I didn't say no, I simply looked at him in the same stern way and Dylan knew it was time to stop fussying around because a small puppy dog face later, he actually stopped. That fat lower lip he gives me when he's about to cry is extremely hard to resist because it's so darn cute but third time is a charm and without giving him extra attention he learned really quick that it wasn't the time to be whiny. Once the dishes were done we partied. 

I love my little big boy and his quest for approval but I definitely need to be mindful of my own reactions because the last thing I want to do is inadvertently teach him something silly, like how to be scared of spiders and squeal like a baby when you see one.