How could this cutie be so mean to her mommy? Yesterday was one of our worst days ever. I know, I know it’s normal for kids to say no and talk back to their moms, but it’s not normal for Ava (or it hasn’t been up to this point).
First, I should mention that she didn’t take a nap yesterday, so that surely contributed to her attitude. When I got to school she was going down the slide and I told her “one more time.” She said something about the number 4 and I thought she just meant she would count to four and go down- so I said “sure.” Turns out, she was trying to tell me she wanted to go down 4 times, so when I told her she was done and it was time to go, she had a fit. On my way out, the teacher mentioned that Ava was shouting at another teacher that day who was trying to help her put on her coat.
We got to the car and I was buckling her in. She tried to move me out of the way with her foot and said, “MOVE!” I didn’t move and told her she needed to ask me nicely. “NO! MOVE!” We went through a few rounds of this and I came to the realization that I could not MAKE her say please. I told her my feelings were hurt and I was very sad. I asked her to say sorry and she said, “NO.” I closed her door, practically in tears, and got into the front seat.
From the back, as sweet as ever, she said, “Mommy, I say move, please.”
“Yes, Ava that’s what mommy was trying to tell you. That makes me very happy.”
“Your feelings are happy now?”
“Yes, my feelings do not hurt anymore.”
And then I beat myself up for making her feel guilty. Aaaahhhhhgggg. I see kids in the grocery store with much more challenging behaviors, but this took me by surprise and I was so sad that she wouldn’t talk nicely to me. Then, of course, I was wondering if I went overboard making her feel guilty.
I know kids need to learn that adults have feelings, too, but I think she’s already prone to feeling guilty. Often when I tell her that a behavior is not okay, she insists that I hold her and she says she’s tired.
So, to wrap this up, I felt like I did the wrong thing and I feared that we were raising a brat. Today. . . everything was perfect. She was an angel at school and couldn’t have been sweeter when I picked her up. I’ll just tuck that bad day memory into the back corner of my mind and continue to believe that Ava is the most precious human on earth and I am a decent mom.
(lots of cute pictures on Flickr)