Turning Aggression in to Calm and Loving Responses :: A Lesson in Expression

by Christine - From Dates to Diapers on September 8, 2013

Noah is all boy. He showed his aggressive nature quite early, and as soon as he could stand on his own he assumed an offensive football stance. He was born tough, has always been loud, and is afraid of nothing.

Over the years I tried to work with Noah to express his frustrations in more appropriate ways, in hopes we could together control this aggression. But, I never really understood it. I understand frustration in children, but the growling, socking a sibling simply because he walks by them, and many other seemingly combative and angry actions, were unlike any my other boys displayed.

Don’t get me wrong, all of my kids antagonize their siblings. They love each other, but boy, do each of them also love hearing the others squeel. Noah just more often than the others.

I don’t believe Noah has ever intended to be mean. He simply feels the need to assert his strength and will in just about every situation. He wants to be noticed and acknowledged, no matter how he accomplishes this attention. I can only imagine how difficult this is with four older brothers. But, he’s a fighter, a warrior.

One day last week was incredibly difficult for me, as a mom, and for Noah himself. Many times I overheard his older brothers telling Timmy, Noah’s only younger sibling, not to “be like Noah”. Noah is sweet, diligent, helpful, my snuggle bug, and incredibly kind – when he’s not literally fighting for attention. Hearing that his older brothers felt like Timmy would somehow be corrupted by Noah was just heart breaking.

I sat my older kids down and explained to them how their words were affecting Noah, and even Noah and Timmy’s relationship. None of them realized that what they said was hurtful; they really only were just cautioning Timmy against being “loud and crazy like Noah”.

And, then came the opportunity for teachable moments with Noah – more loud and clear than they had ever been.

Noah came home from school and, because Timmy was distracted by Curious George and did not immediately acknowledge him, Noah began picking on him. I stopped Noah and gently asked him why he was doing this. Do you know what he said? “I missed him.”

Noah wanted attention from his brother. Noah was frustrated that Timmy didn’t tell him that he missed him, as he often does whenever he notices any of his family members walk through the front door.

“So, instead of antagonizing him, why don’t you give Timmy a hug and tell him that you miss him?”

The look on Noah’s face questioned whether or not that would really work.

“Try it, bubby.”

Noah did. And Timmy hugged him back and told him that he missed him, too.

It really did work!

And this Mama’s heart exploded.

Later that same day, Julia came home from a friend’s house. Noah walked over to her, but Timmy yelled, “I missed you, Julia”. Julia walked right past Noah, straight to Timmy.

Poor Noah looked as if he was going to cry. I asked him what was wrong, wanting him to articulate his feelings in words. He told me that he hadn’t seen Julia all day and she just ignored him. To preempt his aggression towards Julia, I whispered in his ear, “Go give her a hug and tell her you missed her, too.”

“Okay”, he whispered back, as his doubt screamed in my ear.

Julia glanced at me, shocked, as Noah tackled her with a loving hug. I just smiled and winked at her.

BOYS

There have been many more instances since that day. Noah has been working hard on showing his feelings in a nice way. A way that results in positive attention and affirmation that his siblings really do love him.

Do you have an aggressive little one? According to Webster’s Dictionary, aggression is “a forceful action… the process of making attacks… hostile, injurious behavior… caused by frustration.” How have you helped your little one express his frustration in a loving way?

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B2S :: 1st Day

by Christine - From Dates to Diapers on August 27, 2013

Sending five of my kids off on the first day of a new school year, in a new school, was bittersweet. This will be Noah’s very first year away from home, and I know I will miss him in a different way than I will miss the others.

This morning, as I said goodbye to each of them – with lots of hugs and kisses – I prayed that God would go before them and help us all transition well.

BTS Josh and Noah

BTS Zach Julia Ethan

I was excited to hear all about their first day of school and rushed to pick them up. Josh and Noah get out earlier than my middle schoolers, so we had a chance to chat before the big kids got home.

Josh really likes his teacher, has already made a couple of friends, and said that “school is awesome”!

Noah had a fabulous first day. He said that he loves school and “can’t wait until tomorrow!” I really didn’t need to worry about him at all…

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Ben and I had oour first day of school today, too. Well, sort of… We started the morning with a Bible lesson, math, and reading time. We then spent the afternoon getting the test of our school room organized and ready for the rest of the year. I have a feeling our official first day will be next Tuesday, after the holiday weekend.

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Hppy 6th Birthday, Noah!!

by Christine - From Dates to Diapers on August 12, 2013

Noah

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Noah’s New Friends

by Christine - From Dates to Diapers on May 2, 2012

Noah and Ben were playing together nicely in the other room. I could hear them giggling and talking. There was no way I was going to disturb them.

I decided to take a peek at what they were doing and found craft supplies all around them. The room was a mess, but the boys were having fun. Together.

Ben hopped up the second he saw me with my camera in hand. I did, however, manage to capture Noah and the creation of his new friends. He even set them up, all ready for a walk. And a picture.

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It’s Beginning to Look A Lot Like Christmas… Finally!

December 21, 2011

. Did you publish your favorite picture/s this week? I’d love to see YOUR Wordless Wednesday posts! Link up here:: For more inspiring photos, check out 5 Minutes for Mom, The Bonafide Life, Better in Bulk, Shanamama, Not Your Momblog,The Divine Miss Mommy, Colorado Moms, Rajean Blomquist, High Impact Mom,BrainFoggles, Rachel Ferrucci and Zensible Mama. Be sure to link your own photo stories, too.

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Happy Birthday Noah!

August 12, 2011

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” -Jeremiah 29:11

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Noah Rides Again

May 21, 2011

As I mentioned yesterday, we recently received an Early Rider balance bike from TykeRider.com, as well as a Little Nutty helmet, to review. Tyke Rider specializes in top design balance bikes and children’s helmets. Balance bikes are quickly growing as a very popular way for toddlers to learn balance and the ability to ride a [...]

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An Afternoon at The Fountains

April 28, 2011

Today was a beautiful Spring day here in our corner of the world. The sun was shining, there was a slight breeze, and the birds were chirping. A perfect kind of day. It’s only once a week that we have a full day to just play, so after some chores around the house, I took [...]

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Testing Patience

February 3, 2011

Today was a day that God used to strengthen me. To stretch me. To test my patience and my willingness to lean on Him. You see, Noah is my little wild child. God knows I love him, but he tests and pushes his limits every.single.day. Just when I thought he couldn’t push me any further, [...]

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Noah’s Haircut

November 18, 2010

A beard and mustache trimmer. A bald spot. A smiling little person. A shaved head. Yes, Noah re-enacted bits of a scene played out almost exactly a year ago. But this time it wasn’t quite so shocking.

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Happy 3rd Birthday, Noah!

August 12, 2010

You came into this world fast and furious, and haven’t stopped surprising us with your energy and enthusiasm in all of your three years. You are so much fun to watch as you grow and play, never having any problem keeping up with your older brothers and sister. What joy you bring to all of [...]

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God Answers Prayers

February 8, 2010

On Friday, while I was over 2,000 miles away for Blissdom*, I received a call that would make any mom that far away from her babies wish she wasn’t – Ray was at Urgent Care with Noah. My parents had called Ray to tell him that Noah was possibly having an allergic reaction – he [...]

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He-just-can’t-keep-his-eyes-open!

February 3, 2010

Noah, apparently, can sleep standing up! And, we thought Josh could fall asleep anywhere… Isn’t he precious?

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Is a picture really worth a thousand words?

January 23, 2010

This one speaks volumes of our week… I wish I could say that this picture doesn’t tell the story of a sick kiddo. Or two. Or five. One of whom is most definitely cutting his molars. I wish I could say that this picture doesn’t convey exactly how I’ve felt all week long. I wish [...]

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My Brown-Eyed Baby

January 6, 2010

Even in the midst of all of the holidays I haven’t taken many pictures. The only good ones seem to be of my baby. I know, I know… he’s not a baby. But, I’m kind of in denial. Visit more Wordless Wednesday participants at 5 Minutes for Mom and Extraordinary Mothers. Visit Wordful Wednesday participants [...]

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Buzzed

December 5, 2009

The evening started normal enough: we had dinner and then played Uno, my brother and his wife came over to visit, and as we were chatting in the living room, Julia ran in shouting… “Dad, come quick, Noah has something sharp!” “What does he have?” I asked as I jumped up, alarmed. “Just come quick. [...]

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“Where’d my baby go?”

December 4, 2009

Last night I tried to cuddle with my baby. Okay, it’s hard for me to admit, but Noah’s not really a baby any more. Sure, he’ll always be my baby, but you know… As I was saying, I tried to cuddle with him, as he squirmed and tried to escape my cuddles and kisses. He [...]

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Noah’s Obsession

September 30, 2009

Noah has quite the obsession with a magical mouse named Mickey. It has led to early morning pleading, “Watch Mickey, Mommy?” and late night pleading, “Watch Mickey, Mommy?” He even woke up at 2am one night last week asking for Mickey (actually I think he fell off his bed…) Visit more Wordless Wednesday participants at [...]

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“You do it”

September 27, 2009

Noah has already destroyed three laptop keyboards by picking the keys off, with the last incident occurring just this last week. When a friend asked if he is allowed to touch Mommy’s computer, he responded with an emphatic “NO!” I grabbed the camera in hopes that, if asked again, he would be just as emphatic, [...]

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Final Score

September 22, 2009

Noah – 3 Mommy – 0 The game lasted only 15 minutes, but after a long day it left Mommy exhausted. Noah took the lead in the first 5 seconds, by stealing Mommy’s patience by picking all of the keys off her brand new computer, leaving one of them completely missing. Mommy couldn’t quite recover… [...]

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