Pull Yourself Back Parents

Scene: Sidekick and BuddyRoo playing so sweetly together. Time passes, a lot of time. I keep reminding myself that soon I should go make an appearance or lead them into a change. 1.5 hrs of play together is pretty good  for a 5 and 2.5 yr old and I know I'm pushing my luck, that soon it will all crumble. Instead, I keep on cleaning and "getting ahead".
Then screams, shouts, and I walk, really fast, down the hallway. They are both crying and still taking jabs at each other. They see me and wail louder, both trying to express what happened and how the other hurt them. 
When all is resolved and everyone content again I think back to how I interacted with my children. I have been very aware of how my parenting has changed between my first and second child. More specifically, lately I notice that when there is conflict, all too often I'm trying to bring my younger child to the level of understanding that my first child is at. I have sat reflecting, that if I remove my 5 year old from the picture the methods I am using to relate to my youngest are not fair to him. There was no way I would have expected my first born to relate to level I have been presenting to my second child. This is giving him a disadvantage in our family dynamic and it is no wonder he is often frustrated and overwhelmed. 
My mantra lately is "Pull Back Kate". I need to pull myself back through time and interact and gift little Buddy with the same attention that is age appropriate that I did for Sidekick. When I catch myself in these moments and make that genuine effort the situation ends up very different. Certainly I can cease the fighting and conflict by demanding it end. However, now when I respond to what my 2.5 yr old needs, my 5 yr old has his own lightbulb moments and again recognizes that his little brother isn't creating problems just to irritate him. Instead it is just because he is younger and in the process of learning how to handle so many situations. 



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