Thursday, April 19, 2012
My little tornado.
I have a two year old.
His name is Beckett, and his nickname is The Little Tornado, because that's exactly what he is. He is a whirlwind of energy and destruction, and I love every little damn thing about him. Even the destruction. I may not love it in that very minute, but I love it after it's cleaned up, because it gives me a story to tell to family who live far away and don't get to witness the craziness that is my son. It gives them a peek into his constantly-working mind...that mind that seems to want to touch and explore everything he can get his little hands onto.
Beck's been two since Halloween, but it seems like he's just barely realized this, and has some catching up to do as far as the Terrible Two's go. Screaming. Hitting. Pouting. Completely ignoring me. All those and more. I feel like I'm a pretty strict mom; I never give in to a tantrum (from either kid) and I certainly never try to distract them from the tantrum in order to get it to stop. They scream as long as they want, while I let them know it's completely unacceptable behavior. I'm not afraid to put them on a time-out in public. They do not get rewarded for acting that way. Ever.
We had a hard time with Piper...she was a pretty difficult kid up till probably age 4. I'm dreading that with Beck, since he is already so much more of a handful than she was. So, I'm looking at other ways I can improve the situation. The one I keep coming back to is diet.
Now that the holidays are over, I realize just how much sugar my kids eat. Pretty much every time we go to a store, they get a treat. They got stockings and easter baskets full of candy, even though I tried to scale back. They drink capri sonnes daily. We go to Tutti Frutti once a week (although Beck doesn't usually eat his...not a big fan of ice cream). I like to bake. They have syrup on their waffles. They snack on gogurts. My point is that even though we've been TRYING to eat better and that over half my grocery cart is fruits and vegetables and protein now, the kids' diets are still suffering.
So, I'm embarking on a little experiment with my little tornado. Starting today, I'm going to feed him only paleo/primal foods. I'm going to keep track of how it affects his behavior, his sleep, and just his general health (poop, etc). I'm also going to cut out refined sugars for the rest of the family. It's definitely my weakness, and I'm ready to get over this addiction. I'll find some paleo-friendly baked goods to make to treat ourselves too. I'll start getting the kids stickers instead of a sucker at the store. Or nothing. That's even better.
I want to try this for at least a week, but we'll see how it goes. I know we have a BBQ to go to this weekend for Piper's girl scout troop, so who knows how much I'll be able to control there (I've been assigned to bring a dessert, for example). But, I can try.
I feel like the behavioral issues are all connected to his diet: he's grumpy and ornery because he doesn't sleep, he doesn't sleep because his blood sugars are like a roller coaster all day, his blood sugars are crazy because he either ate too much sugar or just snacked all day on crackers and raisins, he snacked all day because I can't get him to sit still for a meal, he can't sit still because he's all hopped up on sugar and/or carbs. It's a viscous cycle that all comes back to his diet.
I started this morning with breakfast...I made him a scramble with one egg, some diced ham, and cheddar cheese. I also gave him some blueberries and raspberries. Brandon makes this egg scramble probably every day while he's home, and Beckett always steals bites of it, so I was hoping he'd sit down and eat it.
Success! He at about half of what was on his plate. Pretty exciting considering he didn't move from the table the whole time (usually he takes a bite and then runs around the house, takes another bite, runs somewhere else, until he's done eating).
I'll try and post throughout the week and let you know how my little experiment goes. Wish me luck!
For those of you who aren't familiar with Paleo, it's basically this:
Vegetables (lots and lots).
Protein (meat, eggs, fish, etc...grass-fed if possible)
Healthy Fats (avocado, olive oil, coconut oil, butter, etc)
Fruit, nuts and seeds (sparingly)