Sometimes I forget what things must seem like to Roo at four and a half, simply because I have forgotten what it was like to be that age. The other day though she said something that really took me a back and made me realise how much at this age preschool children are battling with emotions and often can’t process everything that is going on.
I can’t remember what our little stand off had started over, something daft probably such as not getting undressed for bath as asked or it might have been a combination of general naughtiness throughout the day. Whatever it was, I’d just had to tell Roo she was going to time out. We’ve always used time out in our house, it works for us and Roo knows if she’s in her room she’s in trouble. I carried her up the stairs and put her in her room and shut the gate.
I looked at her and said ‘why are you being such a silly girl today?’ This is where I saw her face change. She began to cry repeating to me ‘it’s in my head mummy, there are things in there that make my head hurt and turn me silly. I can’t stop them they take over and make me not me.’
This struck me as such a grownup thing for a four and a half year to have said, that I instantly reached out to her. I took her in my arms and we sat on the bed. I gently stroked her head and told her there was nothing in there, just her brain that made her a smart, clever girl who I love much. Just that sometimes my smart and clever girl gets too clever and thinks she knows best, when really she needs to learn from mummy a bit more first.
We sat on the bed for a good 10 – 15 minutes just talking afterwards about feelings and how sometimes our feelings can get all mixed up and make us feel a bit confused about what we’re supposed to be doing.
I’d love to know how other mum’s and dad’s handle feelings and their kids battling with emotions.
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