Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Spirited child

We have gradually come to recognise that we have a spirited child. One who is acutely sensitive to her surroundings. Who fusses a great deal over the slightest things. Who refuses to let us go outside her radius of 1m. Essentially, she is what some will call a high-needs baby.

With her, I have learned to accept that battles won today may lapse tomorrow, next week or next month. Whenever we have an achievement of sorts (e.g. with milk drinking), where we get to gain a teeny bit more comfort and confidence of being parents to two, she will throw us off again - either with the same old problem or another new challenge altogether (e.g. Sleeping - which is the biggest we issue we face right now). Sometimes, it feels like an impossible task, trying to set some structured routine into the life of a baby who does not seem to take consistency (nor changes, come to think of that) well at all. But then again, I suspect things might be worse had we not set any structure in the first place.

On the other hand, I trust that God made us unique in our own ways, and when we surrender to His pruning, our shortcomings can be refined to become strengths that can be mightily powerful in time to come. Already, I notice that she picks new skills very quickly (something that as a result of her sensitivity) - provided, of course, she allows herself to absorb what we are trying to teach her in the first place.

For example, I started teaching her to sign "please" in the last one month - somewhat half-heartedly (as opposed to Anya's time when I had all the time in the world). To my surprise, she gesticulated twice upon request so far. Also, she understood what I am referring to when I asked for her plush rabbit, open up and close her fists when we sing "Twinkle, twinkle, little stars" and to clap. Not every time upon request ( which I suspect has much to do her spirited temperament) but enough to let us know that she has picked up the skill/knowledge. All these, she learned, after a few repetitions from us.

As the realization of having a spirited baby sinks in, the Husband and I concluded one thing. What worked for Anya is unlikely to work for Arielle. Right now, we are scurrying off to read up for more insight into our issue before we are reduced to sleep-deprived pandas (not far off now).


Jean said...

*hugs* it is not easy indeed to have a spirited child. Take heart. God knows our every needs and in His time He will provide guidance and help. Pray without ceasing that God will grant you and your husband more strength and wisdom to handle arielle.

Jamie said...

I stumbled across your blog from the SMB blog roll... Just wanted to let u know that I too have a spirited child, she is now 3 years old... It hasn't been easy and it still is challenging on most days but I've learnt to be more patient than ever although some days I still find myself losing it :p take heart :)