Charlie · parenting

April begins

Charlie is back. She was in Arizona for a week. We had a really nice party yesterday, it was so enjoyable to have everyone together and even though it makes me miserable to plan and prepare and think and communicate everything to everyone, I’d say this time in particular, it was all worth it because it was a very nice day, it made me happy. Charlie got a lot of nice things that she really loves. She spent a good amount of time when we got home, after she woke up from a nap, coloring and playing dolls and everything else that kept her occupied for a good 2 hours.

I was proud of myself because she threw a fit as we left the party and her dad put her in the car. She was very upset because she “wants to do whatever (she) wants.” I hear the feeling. I explained to her that we all want to do whatever we want all the time, but that’s just not always a good thing. What if Theo wanted to do whatever he wanted and that included running all over Charlie’s toys. That’s not a good thing…. I tried very hard to get through to her and she ended up understanding in the end. She has valid concerns. She has to listen to us all the time and she feels like she doesn’t get to do things… aside from a week long vacation in Arizona, she must still feel caged… basic instinct that no matter what we have, we long for more…. I understand that feeling…
I felt accomplished and proud…. until she woke up from her nap and starting crying and whining and yelling and I calmly told her to stop and for some reason she thought she was being forced to take a nap and I told her she didn’t have to stay in her room, but needed to be quiet because Theo was still sleeping (he slept from 5:30pm when I put him down to the next morning…!) .
She ended up calming down and telling me she missed Grammie and Grandpa and I brought her in my room and held her in my bed and told her I understood and I missed them, too and she said, “Good.”
We played and she ended up getting a bath and I fed her and it was very late at this point and she wanted to watch a show and I convinced her that it’d be better to just lay down with Mommy and Daddy and we could talk and she didn’t want to do that, but we ended up doing it anyways and she had all her dolls in bed with us.
She said she wasn’t tired… I was exhausted… the bed is too small for the 3 of us so I had to leave at a point. Sean was sleeping in her bed and I was closing my eyes on the couch and she came out to me on the couch and I can’t even remember what she was saying… I was mad, I was tired, I wanted her to just listen and stay in bed. Sean and I went to bed at that point in our room and she was stilling running around from her bed to the family room, I have no idea what she was thinking, but I threatened to take all her toys away if she didn’t stay in her bed. She got upset, but stayed in her bed until I fell asleep.
I’d rather have told her I understand she is excited and she’s had a nice time away, but it’s time for bed and we can play in the morning. She’s a hard sell, most of the time, not always, but I’m going to work more on putting myself on her side of the fence and escorting her over to mine, rather than dragging her, kicking and screaming….
Charlie, we are much alike. I’m not sure if I’m actually a 5-year-old or if you’re a little adult, but I don’t like to be told what to do, either. I get frustrated and upset and feel trapped a lot, myself. It takes work to be happy and I try to surround myself with my own toys in order to be happy… My toys are my family and books and organization and good food, coffee, crafts, certain social gathering… not all! but some…. I’m feeling happier just thinking of all the things I love!

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