Tantrums, cheeky retorts and downright disobedience have been on the menu recently.
I have to ask the question. Why? Why do it? We have to go through the same old rigmarole each and every time. She creates merry hell, then I create merry hell. We bicker and puff out our chests, fighting for top dog. Each of us desperate to be the one who has the final say! Of course, in the end it’s me who usually has the last word, but not before Lily ends up in a pile of exasperated frustration on the floor, exclaiming how unfair I am and how awful it is living in this house. She’s three years old for crying out loud. If I had spoken to my mother the way she does, I’d know to duck, because a clip round the ear would follow! Breath in and exhale several times.
In my pre stay at home days, I was an activity co-ordinator in a medium secure hospital for people with brain injuries. We had all the relevant training including how to handle or more importantly, prevent impending melt downs. Pretty much toddler tantrums, but adult sized (yes, yes, I know. Those of you who just skipped back to the above paragraph….I don’t practice what I preach). Let’s call it the ABC of behaviour. The crux of it is, is that you recognise the pattern and nip it in the bud before you lose the plot completely. So here is the model (my learned friends and ex colleagues will be impressed that I have remembered this).
A is the antecedent. What happened immediately before the misbehaviour, the events that led up
B is the Behaviour. What precisely did the child do?
C is the Consequence. What happened as a result of the behaviour?
How was the problem dealt with?
How did they react?
The short and curlies of it all is, don’t get sucked in to A, then you won’t have to deal with the shit that is B &C!!
On a lighter note we have had some really lovely moments with Lily, and as usual she is delightful the majority of the time.
Lily and her pals were out playing in our little street one day.
All of her friends here are boys, so when they all get together the boys like to play with each other, which means sometimes Lily is curtly told that the game is for boys only. On one of these occasions, one friend H (who’s 4, and we won’t name and shame him) told Lily that the game was for boys only, so she did the usual crying and complaining, to which H’s dad reprimanded him, and asked him to apologise to Lily. Apologising doesn’t come very naturally to our dear offspring, especially when told to do so, but he duly did. H wasn’t too pleased about being humiliated in front of his buddies, so he then turned on the tears and went inside his house. Little miss clever clogs, triumphantly stood up from the ground where she was weeping just seconds previously, punched the air with her hands in time to singing, “I’m happy and I know it”, over and over! Allan and I were in the garden and just burst out laughing. I don’t know if we were genuinely amused or just plain old embarrassed. Two minutes later they were all playing happily together again.
I was coming down the stairs the other morning with Lily, and halfway down I asked if she had been to the toilet yet. Yes, she chirped. I went when you were having nicies with daddy! For the record, our nicies, as Lily so put it, was just a cuddle.
Recently Lily has had a horrid bacterial infection, that made her quite poorly, with a temperature that shot up to well over 100 degrees. After two calls to the NHS helpline and two visits to the doctor, we got some antibiotics, and I can now report a happy healthy little girl. On the first visit to the doctor, I was kindly taken by H and his mum, as Allan was working away. By the time we had made it to the surgery, Lily had perked up after her dose of meds for her temperature. She and H were happily scooting around the waiting room, full of beans and clearly looking as fit as a fiddle. At one point Lily went over to the table housing the mandatory selection of dreary magazines, and promptly chose one for me….. Saga! For those who don’t know, it is a magazine (just like the holiday company) whose readership is aimed at the over 50’s. Now I know I have reached the age of 50, but come on, be nice. I have a little inkling that Lily must have known this, and used her wicked sense of humour to have a laugh at my expense.
We’ll finish with a visit from my brother Martin today.
Lily was quite excited at the thought of him visiting, as she always has lots of fun. Martin is not too grown up to get on the kids level and goof around, and this is fab for the kids. Not so fab for the parents, as he gets them all excited, then leaves! We then have to adopt the ABC Model. Martin is the Antecedent, the giddy excitement is the Behaviour and the Consequences…well you can imagine.
Just before he arrived Lily was running around saying he was taking ages to get here, and asking when he’ll get here. I asked her if she was getting excited, and if she was being silly because Uncle Martin was coming. She said, “Yes I am. But let’s not tell Uncle Martin that he is already very silly”! Out of the mouths of babes and all that.