Thursday, November 8, 2012

Tears with Meaning

As a working Mom, I vividly remember walking my crying toddler into daycare crying, not wanting to go and definitely not wanting to stay.  The guilt sets in.  Am I doing the right thing?  Should I really leave her here?  Maybe I shouldn't be working?  Is this place nice to her?  It's a vicious circle as you start second guessing every decision you ever made even though you knew that your friends highly recommended this school and the teacher was wonderful.  So why does your child kick and scream and cling to you every single day?

It's a crazy awful feeling as a Mom!  With five children and working full time basically until my oldest was a senior in high school, I encountered this feeling more than once.  What I quickly learned was that my original instincts were typically right on the mark.  The school was fabulous.  My child's teacher was good as gold.  My child loved going to school.  My child did cry and throw a fit, but I learned that it was more of a show for me.  Her teacher would tell me that she was fine as soon as I left and had the best day.  

WHAT?  I'm sure this is not a new concept, child manipulating parent.  It amazes me how a few squirting tears can make parents question every decision can change their minds in an instant.

Last night, Daughter #2 and Daughter #3 usually go to a trainer for speed and vertical training.  Daughter #2 hurt her knee so it was just Daughter #3.  Well, she is thirteen but reverted back to her toddler years and me to a new mom dropping her off at child care.  She tried every trick imaginable.  I took a deep breath and held on for the ride.

Now this ride was a bit more bumpy as this daughter does have some anxiety issues, but we do take medication to help pacify them.  So I know some of her concerns are real and different.  However, tears started squirting and irrational words thrown all over the place all because she didn't want to go to the trainer by herself.  She accused me of not understanding.  I sat calmly and talked to her and listened and re-phrased everything she told me. I understood.  I know it's new and scary doing something by yourself.  I understood that she was anxious.  I understood that she didn't want to go alone.  I know it's more difficult when you go to a trainer and they work only you.  This "fit" lasted an hour.  

When I didn't cave and tell her she didn't have to go, I got "no one understands me".  I don't want to go in my by self.  So I volunteered to go in with her.  Then I go a big NO!  I was her Mom and she didn't want me to go in with her.  It continued all the way to the gym.  I finally told her that I was her Mother and I loved her with my whole heart. I would never ask her to do anything that would hurt her.  This might be scary and make you anxious, but it will not hurt you.  I know you are strong enough to do it and I believe in you.  So in this very moment you need to believe that I love you and trust me.  

In the end, she want to her training.  She came out and was fine.  I praised her and told her how proud I was.  She almost started crying out of relief, but I once again told her how much she had accomplished.  I reminded her that we all have to do things that we are scared to do or don't want to do, but do them anyway.  You do it!  Doing it once will give you so much confidence so that you know that next time you will know that you can do it again!   I love you!


  1. It's because parents value their kids so much that a few signs of pain on their faces would seem as if we just deliberately inflicted the pain ourselves, even though it wasn't. But it's how children grow out of their nests and start being independent flapping their small wings.



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