Bean has always been a pretty mild dude. He gets that from his dad. He’s a laid back, go with the flow, playing-with-my-action-heroes kind of a guy. But lately, it is like someone is pouring buckets of testosterone into his system and the BOY is just BURSTING out of him! He’s running and throwing and yelling and climbing walls.
No, seriously. I caught him trying to CLIMB THE DOOR FRAME of his bedroom the other day. When I asked him what he was doing, he said he was climbing like Spiderman. And then he gave me this look like, “Duh, Mom!”
The other day, he came tearing through the kitchen, chasing Gracie with a giant plastic claw. When I told him he had to leave her alone, he said, “But, MOM! She’s my DINNER!”
And yesterday, he threw an entire basket of action heroes down the stairs at one time and yelled out, “LOOK OUT BELOW!” No apparent reason for that one. Just decided to chuck everything down the stairs.
On some days, I get really irritated. He’s just so loud and rough and… and… LOUD. But, I try to look at him as a whole, not just as his rough actions. Usually, he’s rough when he’s imagining games and playing pretend. And I think that is awesome that he’s got such an active imagination. I love that about him. He’s also fairly innocent when he’s being rough. It’s like he truly doesn’t know how loud or rambunctious he is being until you tell him he needs to pipe down a bit. Then he’s pretty quick to dial it back a couple notches.
I’ve been thinking about him as if he’s just gotten a new body and he doesn’t know yet how to control it because that’s basically what it’s like to grow like a stinkin’ weed. Every day he wakes up, that kid is bigger. I feel like I blink and he grows a foot. I remember when he was around a year old, and starting to look a little bit less baby-like. I would sometimes catch glimpses of what he was going to look like as a toddler or preschooler. Now, I sometimes catch glimpses of what he’s going to look like in elementary school. And that terrifies me. This past weekend at a birthday party for one of his friends, I found myself talking about KINDERGARTEN with a couple of the other parents. KINDERGARTEN, PEOPLE.
WHAT THE HECK IS GOING ON HERE? WHAT TIME TUNNEL HAVE I GOTTEN STUCK IN?????? WHERE HAS MY BABY BOY GONE???????
Okay, minor mommy meltdown over. Let’s get back to the rambunctious thing…
We are starting to notice now that with the rambunctious actions we are starting to see a little bit of a rambunctious attitude. His tone is a little more sarcastic when he talks to us. He can be a little more demanding. He is arguing more. He is getting a bit more bossy. All of these are just part of growing up, I’m sure. But dude needs to get the tiny ‘tude under control.
And then! This morning when I was dropping him off at daycare, I happened to stand there a bit longer than I normally do (I’m a quick drop and run kinda momma – usually because I’m running late!), and I noticed a table full of boys “playing” together. And I use the word playing very loosely here. They were shoving toys across the table at each other, trying to hit someone with whatever they were shoving. They were getting in each other’s faces and arguing and snapping at each other – sort of harmless yelling, but it was the same tone that we’ve started hearing at home that we are really trying to curb.
I waited for the teacher (who, thankfully, was not his regular teacher but a fill-in during the morning rush) to say something about speaking nicely or using gentle hands, but she didn’t seem to think anything was wrong. Finally, I stopped the boys at the table and said, “Hey, guys! Let’s speak nicely to our friends, please!” And only then did the teacher come over.
Now, we have a stellar daycare. Really excellent. I love both the kids teachers and feel good about where they are. Which is exactly what I said when I spoke with the daycare manager this afternoon. I told her how happy we were at the daycare and with their teachers, but that I was concerned about some of the rambunctious behavior and harsh speaking that was going on in Bean’s classroom. While I certainly understand that little boys are learning how to be bigger boys and that there have to be allowances for the rambunctious playing, my real concern was that the teachers were not helping them learn the appropriate ways to interact with each other.
Kids yelling, screaming, and throwing things? Fine. Sure. As a teacher myself, I totally understand boys pushing the limits. But there better be a teacher there to redirect their behavior to more appropriate interactions with their friends.
It was one of the only times I have ever had to voice a concern at a daycare, but I think it was the right thing to do. RIGHT???? Or am I being ridiculous? Tell me, imaginary friends, how rambunctious is too rambunctious?????