Thank you Kathy for your considerate response. A lot really struck home for me to see things directed at MY son as opposed to reading articles and taking classes where something was preventing me from deeply realizing my child is in fear. My denial lifted and I’ve been absorbed in these thoughts about how I am, how he is and how we can navigate our way to peaceful sleep and fulfilling days.
My husband who is not always on the same parenting page seems to take this personal response more seriously which I’m very grateful for. It’s hard to be triggered by a 3 yr old then triggered by a spouse in the same breath.
I’ve been watching my son’s own triggers unfold and I can see his face beginning that loop, so I get in close, smile and touch him nicely. This has actually avoided a few of his regular rampages which has given me some space to regroup my strength. Taking his hand to transition before revealing what’s next has really helped too. You really hit the spot when you mentioned he can’t think when I give a verbal command especially when it’s a limit. (he must sense my tension around limits as I was raised quite strictly regarding limits).
As for me, I’m trying to explore my triggers and will delve deeper with my listening partner and try to find a second one as we aren’t meeting enough. Special Time is tough for me as my mother never played with us as kids. So it’s really exhausting but at least it’s only for limited time. Playlistening has been great since its snowed. He loves throwing snowballs at me while I act very scared. Indoors he’s now got bubble wrap to scare me with. I’ve asked my son to remind me to take a deep breath at the very beginning of looking angry (to help me and to model a tool he can use too) and he’s done so well. I actually see that he notices I’m triggered before I notice. Amazing how observant kids are. Or perhaps his hypervigilence is yet another sign of his insecurity.
So it’s only been a few days, but I am really swimming in it all and seeing a lot of potential for improvement. Thank you so very much.