Progression Not Regression

My son Jude
My son Jude

My son is in the middle of a regression. I don’t really know what sent him there but I am thinking it may be the combo effects of another little one being added to the community as well as the fact that he is interacting more and more with my 8 month old niece. Whatever it is that is creating this regression it is beginning to take its toll on mom! My (almost) 20 month old son is suddenly waking multiple times a night, he is whining throughout the day, he has serious separation anxiety, he hollers “MOMA!” every few minutes, he is not eating very well and has begun chewing on his clothes and fingers as well as babbling and sometimes screaming, using mostly baby noises that were no longer part of his every growing vocabulary.

So what has happened to my son? Is this regression or is this just a part of his progression? Now that I think about it labels like “regression” are all over the place, many times when a child acts out or does something out of his normal pattern it is called a regression. According to the dictionary the definition of regression is: “the reversion to a chronologically earlier or less adapted pattern of behavior and feeling.” Now I know for a fact that we are not going backwards in time, my son is never decreasing in intelligence and his feelings are only on the incline, his behavior even though it may seem to be moving to an earlier state is now just a way to communicate in the state that he is in now. Now the work really begins because as his mother I must now realize that my son is progressing to a new stage in his life and it is now necessary for us to both learn ways to deal with things in this new stage. According to the dictionary the definition of progress is: “growth or development; continuous improvement”

I am by no means saying that I have the answers because I still am not completely sure what to do with the fact that “MOMA!” gets hollered every few minutes in my home, that he hardly lets me move several feet from him and that I can’t seem to keep him from chewing on all his clothes right now or that he seems to think that his baby cousin is a pillow or that some days he seems to have completely forgotten how to communicate in any way that I can understand him. The first step for me is to realize that we are not regressing but progressing and that this is just a new stage with new challenges for us both to meet head on! We are both (like the definition states) “growing and developing; continuously improving.”

Jasmine is a co-housing community living mama with a passion for fierce writing she blogs.

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