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Movie Day Gone Bad

Monday, September 23, 2013

Hard to believe that baby Bel has advanced to the preschool years. I still remember that chubby little bundle of milk-drinking love that she was long ago. Now she is beautiful, smart, opionionated, and intuitive. There is little that can get by her ears without almost complete understanding.

She still struggles with controlling her emotions. I guess even adults still do often times. I enjoy making her happy and when I cannot do so, it pains me inside. For instance, we had been planning on going to the movies for a couple of days. She was so excited about it and didn't want to do anything else but go to the movies. When movie day arrived, she woke up that morning and said she didn't want to go and just wanted to stay home. I guess I was still geared up for going and knew she had badly wanted to go for a while. So later that morning, I asked her again, and she was ready to go. But alas, it was a disaster. Towards the end of the movie, she started getting restless. And by the end of the movie, she was so tired that she had a major melt down. One that I haven't seen for a while.

We met her friend at the movies, and when it was time to go home, she broke down into a crying and screaming fit because she wanted to spend more time with her friend. And kept repeating "I don't want to go home". Knowing full well the rule in our family. That is if she throws a tantrum when I say its time to leave (a fun place), we cannot go back (for a while or the next time she asks to go). Reminding her of that fact usually keeps her in check, but this time she lost it and couldn't regain composure. And she knew she lost it, so she went all out. Carrying on with screaming and crying for 20 minutes, like she did when she was in her terrible twos.

I felt like unleashing all the terror of my vocal chords onto her in the car. But instead I tried to talk to her and understand what was going on. I have been accused of over-talking things out before, but I guess I sort of lost it too. After all the talk, I break it down to being that she is feeling under the weather, with a cold, she was tired, she was feeling a little restless from sitting still for so long in the theatre, on top of the usual disappointment of having to leave a fun place, and her friend.

If I was more understanding, maybe I would have pardoned the behavior. If I had let loose a little more, I would have unleashed a dragon onto her. But I picked somewhere in the middle and tried to talk through it. But mostly, I got a very tired, upset, sick person who couldn't think straight, let alone talk to me heartfully about it.

So what would I do next time? I don't know. It seems that the older she gets, she needs to be more accountable for her reactions. Being almost 4 (by next month), I think it is reasonable to expect a child to leave a fun place at a reasonable time without a tantrum. Granted, she may be prone to overly dramatic emotional reactions, as compared to her friends, but my husband thinks that we can teach her to find a way to keep that in check.

Enough of my rambings, though. It just feels better to be able to share.

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