Over the last few weeks, it seems to me, Nathan's behavior has been changing. I don't think this has to do with the cancer. It was happening before the relapse, but may be accelerated (or seem that way to me) because of it. Nathan has always been a quiet, calm, respectful boy with a lot of self-control. Quite honestly, he had these traits up to the point of not being a normal acting child of his age. Well, lately he has taken to random wild outbursts of noise, having an inability to remember or act on direction, showing defiance and testing control boundaries, and etc. When I think about it, I think it is probably quite good and natural and nothing more than the normal challenges a kid of his age provide parents. The problem for me right now is that I have such issues about trying to control whatever I can in my life (including my kids' behavior) and my stress levels are, oh, just a bit high, that I'm having a hard time dealing with it. I yelled at him pretty good last evening. He was doing something for the umpteen time that I had told him not to and it just pissed me off good. Now, I think kids need yelled at sometimes. I think it should be rare though. I don't practice what I preach on this, although I try. Really I do. I feel guilty enough when I yell at any of my kids over something I know that I shouldn't be yelling about, but with Nathan that guilt is amplified. What kind of parent yells at his kid that is dealing with the fact that his cancer has returned and has just had chemo the last three days for being overly enthusiastically loving towards his 7 month old sister?

I have had some real problems with stress and lack of patience interfering with my ability to do the one thing that is most important to me, especially now. That one thing is to enjoy the time I have with my family and to be as good a husband and father as I can. I've got to get a better handle on this because things are just going to get worse.

Sorry, no comments. Even though you mean well and there may be some truth to it, this is one of those times I don't want to hear anyone pat me on the back. Yes, I'm doing the best I can. Sometimes, sadly, my best isn't good enough. Now I just have to find the trick to improving on my best.