On Tuesday I learned a lesson on how to help Mary when she has a tantrum.
It was 10am, and the babysitter had just arrived. I was settling into my seat by the window when I heard Mary start to scream at Ammon and the babysitter. Lately, whenever I hear her start to scream, I call her upstairs, listen to her, talk to her, give her options, and let her choose a behavioral “option” that will solve her problem. She usually responds well to this.
However, yesterday she did not like my options. I gave her the options to either play nicely with Ammon and promise to be nice to the babysitter or to play in her room by herself. She appeared to think that both of these options were horrible, and so she sat in my chair and screamed at me until 11 am. She screamed things like, “I hate you! You don’t love me! You want me to stay in here forever and be boring boring boring! You’re the meanest mom ever! I am going to stay here until Nana comes back! I want Nana! NANAAAAAAAA!!!!”
Because I have 6 weeks of bedrest behind me, I felt unusually patient, calm, and full of love for her. I sat on the ottoman knitting, and every time she took a breath I would tell her I love her, pat her legs, and remind her that all she had to do to leave the room was pick an option. And at 11am, one hour of screaming later, she did! I was beginning to think we were stuck forever.
An hour later Mary came back up to my room with a tray for a tea party she had prepared for us. After pouring me “tea,” she climbed onto my bed and said, “Mom, do you know why I told you I didn’t love you earlier? Because I was preparing this SURPRISE (and here she threw out her arms wide) for you!!”
I was so thrilled. I drank approximately nine refills of tea and ate a bun she had brought up on a mini plate. Now I know all I need going forward is TONS of rest, and I can handle Mary’s meltdowns!!
Also, Liem and Phuong hiked the Teton Crest Trail over the weekend, and they joined us for dinner and stayed with us Tuesday night. We had the most fun talking with them.
And at 9 pm, my mom came back from Michigan!!! We are all so happy to have her back. I have a picture of Lydia wearing the stuffed mustache Nana brought her, but it’s on Abe’s phone. I will post it later.