March 21, 2009
terror of tiny town

I started my marking backlog today. Ugh. I can believe that I used to have the patience to do this stuff for more than 10 hours straight. It took me hours just to mark on set of tests. Of course, I used to be able to spend all day with a novel, and those days aren't coming back any time soon. My laser-like focus is refracted these days.

Blake continues to be the terror of tiny town. He feels the need to fight every transition, no matter how much warning I give. And the need to run off immediately is getting pretty old too. The kid weighs over 40 pounds. I can't haul him over my shoulder like a sack of grain.

It's not a happy thing when our best moments consist of the immediate aftermath of fighting. I don't want to start getting rid of his stuff, but nothing makes him listen faster than the prospect of bidding his toys goodbye forever. Of course, this just fuels his desire to be in the Lego-rich Casa Nova. And where did he get these sets? His daddy made a chart, and gave him set after set when he returned weeks of positive reports (despite his teacher writing that the only thing he cared about was the report, and he has been known to haul off and sock a kid as soon as a positive report is entered in his log. Charming).

Yes, I've tried talking to the Boy about the stunning lack of success we're having with reward-centred behaviour modification. He doesn't seem to listen, or just thinks that ignoring my parenting concerns is another benefit of moving out. I feel like I'm struggling against a rip tide of Blake's misbehaviour, like I can't go a single day without a huge knock-down tantrum over something as simple as getting out of bed in the morning or going into the bath. This is wearing me out, and it's hard not to let grey despair overwhelm me when my co-parent is orbiting the moons of Saturn and my patience is held together with rags and staples. Mason is helping as much as he can, but I still feel like it's my responsibility to deal with this little beast myself. I just hope he grows out of this before I leave him to the squirrels in the back yard.

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Don't make me send out the Blake. He doesn't listen to *anyone.*