Thursday, June 10, 2010

One Step Forward, Five Steps Back

Remember my last post, when I said that swimming went so much better? Yeah, just forget about that. Today's class was not so successful. He screamed and cried the whole way through. But we hung in there. Our instructor Laura was very patient with us. She told me to keep working with him on it, but Sutton was just not in a swimming mood today. In his defense, the water was really salty today (they have a salt-water pool, to avoid using chlorine) and it was burning my eyes, and I didn't even go under the water. We did a couple of submersions and Sutton DID NOT like it. He started crying even harder.

I think he was a little scared of swimming today. This past Sunday, we went to the pool at my mom's house and he fell under the water. It was in the baby pool, but he couldn't get his bearings and stand up properly. Luckily, I was close enough by that I could grab the back of his swim shorts and haul him up. To be honest, it scared ME more than I think it scared him. As I went to sleep that night, I kept seeing Sutton floating facedown in the water. That is the very reason he is taking swimming lessons. So if he ever falls in, he knows what to do.

Another problem that we're having is that he would rather play in the water, than actually try to learn anything. He HATES floating on his back. HATES IT. We're supposed to float them on their back, with their head on our shoulder. But he tries to jackknife his body up, and he is STRONG!

I know it's because he doesn't like being held down, when he doesn't want to do something. It's the same thing with changing his diaper, brushing his teeth, putting on sunscreen, etc. You know, those everyday things. He thrashes, screams, struggles, etc. Dave and I have just learned that it's easiest to hold him down, do it quickly, and distract him as soon as it's over.

I'll give you an example. Last week, Sutton had a dentist check-up. The technician asked if they were any problems we were having. I told her how we have to fight Sutton to brush his teeth. She made some agreement noises, but didn't say much more. When the dentist came in, she attempted to clean his teeth. I say "attempted" because Sutton put up such a fight. He kicked, screamed, thrashed, cried, and made such a struggle that I had to hold his hands down on his chest, so he couldn't grab the dentist's tools. Then the technician says to me, "You weren't kidding!" I said, "This is what it is like every night!"

We've tried all sorts of ways to get him to brush his teeth. If we let him do it himself, all he does is chew on the brush and suck the toothpaste. So we have to bite the bullet, so to speak, and do it for him. And then we limp away to lick our wounds, and do it all again the next night.

I know this is normal, but it really can be painful.