"Mom, how does the Tooth Fairy fly through the air?"
"How do YOU think?"
"I think moms do it."
"But how can a Mom be a Tooth Fairy?"
"Good moms are lots of things, Princess."

Friday, June 25, 2010


Princess has been on a jag, and it is not! pleasant. I feel sure it's not trauma-based, but it takes nothing! to set her off. She has pretty literally spent the entire week somewhere in the range from scowling to full-blown rage. She bit my arm to the degree that I felt I had better photograph it. And there seems to be no basis, just plain old pushing us away. I've been hitting her hard the past few days about what it means to be a "daughter" versus a "visitor," and what kinds of work and privileges go with each. Josh and I have both been wearing reeeeeealy thin.

I ran off to "Beginning Adult Ballet" (and there is a post in there somewhere, oh yes there is) last night; and when I returned, Princess had a gigantic scowl gracing her face. I hopped out of the car and in my most cheerful voice said, "well, THERE's that big frowny face! Good thing, too, or I might not have recognized you!" and turned to the much more pleasant looking Peanut, who showed me a marble she found. We walked into the house while I tried my best to ignore the grousing whining complaining voice and stomping feet behind me. I'm good at talking cheerfully and incessantly.

Josh asked me to pick up a prescription for him. Sure! Peanut asked to go with! Sure! Princess asked to go with.

If you can, picture a beautiful child with a hideous look on her face whiningly asking if she can go for a ride.

"Princess, love; I don't think that is going to work for me. I can tell by the look on your face that you will start screaming and hitting Peanut soon after we start driving, and that will be unpleasant for me. And for Peanut."

The screaming ensued.

When I got home, Princess was in bed (clothed), and Josh was doing his best. I watched the unproductivity for a while, and said, "I'm going to put her in the bath tub."

Princess apparently thought I intended to have her sleep in the bath tub, which made the next few minutes interesting. But the understanding of my actual intentions didn't really change her mood. While the bath was filling, every time she opened her mouth, even, to tell me she didn't waaaaaaaaant a bath, I repeated, "but I am not asking what you want. I would be interested in what a daughter wants, but you are not choosing to be a daughter right now. A daughter is pleasant, fun to be around, and talks about her thoughts and feelings. You are choosing to be unpleasant. You are choosing to be not fun at all to be around. And you are choosing to keep your thoughts and feelings to yourself." It was a lot to repeat, so it usually covered two or three anti-bath statement.

I put her in, and of course the temperature of the water was not to her liking. And it was too wet. Yes it was. During the grouse-fest, Princess commanded me to leave the bathroom. I said, "but you want to be a visitor. I don't do what people tell me to do with a mean voice. In fact, I think I want a bath, too.

And I whipped my clothes off and got in.

This was not planned.

Ohhhhh, did that throw her for a loop. I was banking on the water and my skin and the whole baby-bonding experience to calm her, but holy nutso did she fight it. I snuggled her closer and closer, talking the whole time, bright and happy. Mostly repeating the differences between daughters and strangers/visitors and what she could expect if she chose family work or if she wanted to be a big crabber-crab. Not in those words.

Suddenly, there was the same crabby noise, but with different vocal-like sounds.

"Wait, what?"
"Mumble smumble grumble."
"Can you be more clear? I want to hear that."
"I mumble to smumble dagrumble."
"I couldn't understand that. But it sounded interesting. Would you try again?"


"Oh. You do. Interesting. It won't be easy, Honey. You'll have to practice. Would you practice with me now? What do you want to start with: being pleasant, being fun to be around, or talking about your thoughts and feelings?"

She wanted to practice being fun to be around. So we played this little piggy. By my first toe, she was actually giggling. Then we practiced Talking About Your Thoughts and Feelings. She wanted to talk about getting mad a Peanut about marble ownership.

"Lets pretend there's a girl who looks a lot like you, but she's a Regular Kid. Her name is Molly. She has a mom, dad, two sisters, and a brother like you do, but nothing bad has ever happened to her so she's just Regular. What do you think she would have done?"

There were some false starts, but then Princess said, "Molly thought of a game they could play together with the marble. And she felt good about it."

"And how did you feel after you handled it?"
"So who do you think handled it better?"
"Molly. Because she felt good and I didn't."
"What does that tell you?"

"I don't handle things the best way."


We got out of the tub, and she was beaming. I pointed it out and asked her where she felt happy. She circled her head and said, "here, because I'm smiling all over."

So, so thankful. This child does not talk to me. Ever.
This child, who does not talk to me, ever, spoke.


  1. YAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    WOW, that is SOOOOOO awesome!!!!!!!

    Woooooo hoooo!

  2. You are such an amazing mom! I am in awe!

  3. I'm not going to lie, I got a little teary eyed reading that. How awesome. She WANTS to be your daughter! What an amazing CHOICE from a little girl.

  4. She wants to be your daughter, a real Princess. {Big smile} You are truly a queen; full of grace and benevolence.

  5. I'm glad it worked out but I got a little nervous about the whipping off your clothes part and playing in the tub naked with your daughter. From what I've heard and read about RAD (and I don't know much. My kids are regular kids, like the imaginary Molly) children sometimes try to get back at their parents by reporting them for imaginary abuse. One mom who blogs about her efforts with her RAD daughter said she makes her daughter shower in a bathing suit because she has to check and see if the girl is washing herself or only pretending and she fears being reported for peeping at her daughter's nude body, hence the bathing suit. I know it sounds nuts but I just wondered about the bathtub thing and if your kids have ever made a false charge against you, or threatened to.

  6. @Miz Kizzle: I understand the concern, but I make a conscious choice to not live in fear of CPS. For one thing, there is NO WAY a person can predict and trouble-shoot what a child will say if the child wants to "get them back" in that way. My own children haven't threatened or made charges (other than Peanut trying to call 911 to report me as a "shut-up face"), but whenever anything that could become questioned arises, I do let the professionals in our "team" know about it as soon as possible.