I am there.
Firstly, the good, because... I love the good.
I cannot tell you guys exactly how proud of James I am whenever we drive in the car. I have a set CD I listen to, about 180 songs hand picked.
(one thing they never tell you is the wave of song choices that come when you have kids... at first, they're babes and they know nothing, so it doesn't really matter WHAT the songs are saying as long as they sound nice. Then comes the "copy ever word heard" stage, in which you veto the car songs. Again, it doesn't really matter what the songs are about, as long as the swears are absent. Then comes the "listen to the words" stage, where the kids listen to what's being said. Then you have to veto more songs out, because the content is inappropriate, although by this stage, a lot of the earlier songs can come back in, because the ones you originally vetoed because they were too loud/fast/not soothing, are now "fun" for the pre-schooler... Look, I tell you what, music in the car is SERIOUS BUSINESS in my world).
James tends to be quite eclectic in what he likes and doesn't like. He has a tendency to like the more rocky/alternative songs (has expressed a great preference for the one TISM song I can play, "Apathy", also "1985", but also likes random other music as well. It's all good.
BUT... and, this is the part I love, he questions it. And not, what exact words are they saying, but.. "What are they REALLY saying, mum?"
What he's asking is, "what does this song MEAN?"
eg "Don't Rain on My Parade" is about someone who wants to be happy and won't let anyone stand in their way, they know what they want and they're going out to get it.
"The Drugs Don't Work" is about someone being sad, because they can't be with the person they want to.
Yes, oversimplifying, but he's four. Give him a break.
I love my critical thinking child.
Then... *sigh*... moving onto the not-so-good. I threw James out of the house the other day. Not, like, physically or anything, but... He has, for I can't even remember how long, been telling me how much he hates this house and he doesn't like being here and he doesn't ever want to come home, he cries when I put him in the car... like, it's constant, and it's beginning to wear me down. And this week, it started with "I wish Nanny was my REAL mum". Like, I know the kid is four... but gimme a break. I'm doing the best I can. And Monday was a bad day overall, there was whining and arguments and crying and a tantrum in the park, because he didn't want to go home. So I drove him to his nanny's house all "get out of the car, go knock on the door. Bye." and left him there for a few hours.
He barely even blinked, in fact, his reaction was "Yay! I love Nanny's! This is my favourite place!" Grrr.
And today, it began again, all over. "I wish Nanny was my real mum." And no matter what I said, he just kept on and on and on about it. So... "Fine. You get yourself into your own jammies, brush your own teeth, put yourself to bed. I don't have to do anymore mummy things for you until tomorrow. Fine by me."
He stayed up 'til 10pm and then fell asleep on the couch. I prodded him awake and made him dress himself and brush his own teeth. Gave him kisses and told himself to tuck himself in.
I held fast, too. I didn't weaken, I didn't carry him to bed, or give in and help him.
Yes, I know, he's four (practically five, like... a month, really), but seriously. If doesn't like the job I do, he can do it himself.
I figure we'll talk this out tomorrow, when I'm mummy again.
I am emotionally fragile right now (gee, ya think?) and he's tapping into every wrong nerve I have. It's... so draining. Usually I can laugh this shit off, but... right now, it's not happening.