19 August 2012

Who'd Have Thought?

Ya know, kids can be so amazing! Concepts that you would think are beyond their comprehension can be grasped in the blink of an eye, while the most simple ideas can be readily ignored.

Princess had been acting out and pouting and throwing tantrums and just generally being unmanageable. I had gotten worn out to the point I could barely see straight when I got the wild idea of simply sitting her down and explaining a few things to her. I told her that Daddy wasn't able to give her attention every minute of the day like she wanted. I told her I wanted to, but I just couldn't. Little Man has been having a hard time teething, my seizures are just now getting under control yet and I am so sleep deprived it's crazy. I explained that, regardless of what I wanted and regardless of what she wanted, I couldn't give her my undivided attention as often as she wanted.

But, I told her that if she could handle playing by herself or with her brother sometimes, and help me out by not destroying the house in the process, then I would make her a promise. I promised that any time she felt like she needed my undivided attention, all she had to do was ask me for it. And if I could manage it right that second, I would drop anything I was doing and I'd be hers. And if I absolutely couldn't manage it, I would ask her to be patient and let me make time for her as soon as I was able.

I didn't expect it to actually work. I mean seriously - she's a very hyper four! But...you guessed it. The child who can't remember not to treat her brother like a toy has suddenly developed an understanding of patience. It's utterly amazing! I've always believed in speaking plainly to my children and I know how clever they both are, but wow! She has begun to be more polite and patient and she's begun helping me clean the house and do simple chores. She's been playing more gently, and she exhibits admirable patience when she asks for attention and I have to tell her no. She's still four, and she still gets in trouble, but it's much more controllable and low scale than it used to be. As a result, I'm able to spend much more time just playing with her and spending quality time with her. It's wonderful! Who'd have thought?