Little Miss is my challenge child. She’s headstrong and spirited, and I don’t have to worry about her ever being bullied. I just pray that she uses her powers for the side of good – she’s cute and she knows it, and she knows how to take advantage of it (and has for years).
As Mommmy, I get to be the bad guy.
Little Miss, you need to drink your milk.
Little Miss, you must take all your vitamin.
Little Miss, you have to take a nap, which means no getting out of your room and no peeps.
Little Miss, you may not play with that right now.
And the list goes on. And on.
This morning, we were having a discussion about drinking her milk (which also contains her liquid vitamins, per her request). She didn’t feel like drinking it, and I explained that she had no option before her bus came.
After doing some cajoling, I explained what would happen if she didn’t drink her milk. She’d lose her light saber (yes, I have the only four year old girl who knows more than the average Star Wars geek about the movie – and no she hasn’t seen it).
Go ahead, Mommy, just take the light saber now. It’s ok.
So we tried the no toys in the room trick.
You can take all my stuffed animals, Mommy. I don’t need them.
As I was cleaning up while she ate breakfast, I picked up the artwork she’d brought home the day before and accidentally mixed it in with the recycling.
Mommy, MOMMY! What are you doing? she shrieked.
Mommy, I need my ducky and my pony back. Mommy, don’t throw them away!
And thus her milk was drunk this morning. And I retrieved her treasures. For whatever reason, no inducement to drink interested her this morning.
Then I realized it was just a crabby and temperamental day for her.
On our way home from picking up Mister Man at school, all the carpool kids shared a snack of Triscuits and grapes. Little Miss had asked only for a few Triscuits and eaten them (somewhat) happily. After we dropped off the carpool buddies, Little Miss discovered that the grapes were all gone. The grapes that she’d shown zero interest in for the previous twenty-five minutes.
And the screaming began. And the giant crocodile tears flew down her face. Mister Man is trying to explain that he didn’t know she wanted any and apologize for eaten them all, but she wanted none of it. I tried to explain to her that she was being unreasonable and needed to stop screaming since it was still raining hard enough that it was difficult to see.
Little Miss, I need you to stop screaming in the car. Mister Man didn’t know you wanted any grapes, and there’s nothing we can do about it now. If you can’t stop screaming, I’m going to ask you to get out and walk home once we get into the neighborhood. I can’t drive with this screaming.
She paused for a moment and looked at me. I heaved a sigh of relief.
So are you going to stop crying then, Peanut?
Shrieks again filled my car, and I cringed. Mister Man placed his hands over his ears and tried to drown out her noise.
As we got closer to our neighborhood, she got quieter and quieter. I turned into our neighborhood with blessed silence in my car. I thanked her for ceasing her screaming so that we could get home all together.
I could almost see the wheels turning in her brain. She took a deep breath.
So I did what any mom with a massive headache (and amazingly cleared up skies with no more rain) would do. I pulled over and asked her if she really wanted to run home.
That’s about the point where I learned she can now unbuckle her own carseat. I shrugged, and she climbed out.
She ran the next three blocks to our house, while Mister Man and I crawled along the street in my car keeping pace with her (and no, we didn’t have to worry about crossing streets).
Little Miss arrived home breathless but giggling madly. My happy little girl was back, and she loved her adventure of running home. Go fig. Actually, as much as she enjoyed her exercise and independence, I might have accidentally created a new monster.
I need to find yet another new form of timeout, I think.