"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."

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

All I Want for Christmas is for Hygene to be a Given

I arrived downstairs yesterday morning to a fully-dressed Princess with hair not pulled back- you know, so the uncombedness was obvious. I said, "Good morning! I still want you to take a shower this morning."
Oh! (bounds upstairs)
A couple of minutes later (seriously, no more than two), I turned around from the coffee-maker, and there was Princess.

Ummmmm. Princess? You could not possibly have washed yourself that fast. You could not have even gotten your clothing off that fast.
Ummm, no.
Ok, well, I'd really love to see which shampoo and soap you used. Come show me?

We truck up to the shower. Wet shower. No shampoo. No soap. No washcloth. No towel.

Princess, take a shower.
I DID!!!!!!

Again Princess appeared. Again in the vicinity of my coffee maker. But this time after roughly 45 seconds. With the top of her head wet.

Deep, morning, pre-coffee sigh.
Ok Princess. I'd really love for you to show me how you took a shower. Because I think you have a magical way of doing it super-fast without any cleaning products that I don't know about. Maybe it would save me some time in the morning if I showered your way, so I'd like to learn how.

I don't think I could possibly detail how the next ten minutes went. But a lot of things got thrown. A shower door got torn off. There was wrestling. And a song about how sad it was that Princess "can't do" so much stuff. And, somehow, Princess got soaped up with all her clothes on. And the bathroom floor became a pond. I think that one had something to do with the shower head being removable.

The rest of the day was just as RADly. Princess spent most of the day sitting right. smack. next to me, complaining about how boring everything was. I think I definitely got the short end of the stick on boring, personally, but I didn't think it would be a good idea to mention it.

Then I started to frost trays of cookies to decorate. And the dawn of Realization That One Cannot Decorate Cookies While Sitting on the Floor dawned over Princess.

Mom? Can I fix things now?
Why, sure honey. Just a minute.

And for a test of intentions, I set out the cookies for the other kids. I left another tray visable, so Princess would be able to see she wasn't going to get left out, but even still I was shocked when I led her away and she did not display any anxiety about the cookies.

So, ok. This wasn't a "trick" to get to participate in something. It was going to be real. On some level, anyway.

We sat down. Princess said, "I told you to shut-up. I'm sorry."
"I forgive you, sweetie. I love you."

And then we sat. And sat. And sat. And sat.

I have an idea, Princess. Let's start at the beginning. I told you to take a shower and you didn't feel like doing it. So you didn't obey me, instead you......
Turned on the shower and sat on the counter.

AAAAGH!!! She actually told me what she DID!!!! Did you SEE that? She NEVER admits what she actually did. EVER. On the pain of death. I about passed out, I tell you.

So I wish I could say the rest of the day was well-regulated and peaceful. But you know it wasn't, because Christmas is this week. At the same time, we had another break-though moment, and I am stunned, because how can this happen during a holiday week?

I was doing the dinner dishes, and Peanut asked if she had any homework. Why yes. Here you go. Then my RADette sensors popped out, because Princess giddily announced she had homework, too, and got out a math paper.

Princess doesn't have any homework over break. And she knows it.

Pretty soon, Princess was snarking about how easy Peanut's homework was. I dutifully did the "normal mom" thing and said, "Peanut's homework should be easy for you. It is first-grade homework. We are not going to tease Peanut about doing first-grade homework. Peanut is in first grade."

Yeah. Didn't work. Princess got more and more disruptive, and Buddy, who can't not bite on bait, was soon involved as well. I sent both of them out of the room, because the poor child wanted to do homework. Buddy and Princess continued fighting in the living room. I finally gave up, and Josh and I made them sit by us and have an intervention. Buddy was spoken to about his behavior and grounded from his Nerf dart gun. And his pop-ball gun. And Peanut's pop-ball gun (yeah. They were involved). And dismissed. Then it was Princess's turn.

But Buddy...
Yeah, I know. Except this didn't start with Buddy. You know when I saw a Big Feeling start?
When Peanut got out her homework. You wanted to do homework too (no). You wanted to do it better (no). You wanted to make sure everyone knew homework is easy for you (homework is easy for me. I'm really good at math). You wanted to hide that homework is hard for you (silence).

We know school stuff is hard for you, Princess. You don't have to try to hide it. It's ok.
Princess's head got lower and lower.
Do you hear me, honey? It's ok. We will never be mad or embarrassed that school is hard for you. It's ok with us. We know. It's ok.

Josh is dislexic, and he told her about how had school was for him. And that he works longer and harder than other people. And that he found other things he's extra good at.

And she listened.

I can tell, becuase usually she'd sit and endure and tune out and leave the room and immediately go back to irratating somebody until they wronged her and she could have a rage, but instead, when I said, "what would make you feel good right now", she thought, and said,

"reading in bed."
And she did.


  1. Perfect. What wonderful parents Princess has.

    I enjoyed very much visualizing the bathroom scene!

  2. Wow, so much great stuff happening here! It sounds like there were some wonderful moments inside all the RADly- ness!