Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Just Say No

Nope. I didn't post yesterday. I was spent after a day that wouldn't seem to end. Yesterday was difficult for me and for her.

I didn't notice it until I heard the soft sniffling coming from the passenger's seat. Her head was turned to the window and she wouldn't respond when I said her name. There was lots to do yesterday: house cleaning, running errands, grocery shopping, laundry, etc. She is very helpful around the house; she loves to clean and organize. We have tried to tell her "no" when she tries to clean, but she genuinely wants to help and it hurts her feelings if we persist in our objections. She's actually outside in the car with the Dustbuster as I write. (No, you can't borrow her.)

Things are different here. There are different people and different rules. Teaching her the rules is taxing. When we left the airport last Wednesday, I buckled her into the seat. When Robert showed her the sunroof, she sprung up out of that seat quicker than I could react. She did not like the seatbelt and did not want to wear it. Each time for the first few days she would say, "Leslie, please no!" I would say "Da." I would win. She would put the seatbelt on with a heavy sigh. After a few days I wouldn't say anything. I would put mine on, start the car, and just sit in the driveway. After a moment she would look up and say, "I know. I know!" I have forgotten how tiring the struggle is. My four know the ropes and are at an age when I rarely have to remind them of the basic rules. So there have been a lot of "No" moments in our home lately. I resist the temptation to spoil her because she has not had things before. I try to remember the limits that we live within and follow those. When she wants to eat chocolate for breakfast, I have to say "nyet". When she wants to carry the cats around (they hate that), I have to say "nyet". I find myself saying it more than I am used to and probably more than she is used to hearing. So we are both tired from the growing pains of this relationship.

I try to put myself in her shoes and feel what she is experiencing. We are new adults telling her what to do and not to do. Our children are gone for camp and she is here alone with us. She is accustomed to being with kids 24/7. So I am getting the bulk of her energy. The entire experience is overstimulating and she was hyper yesterday. I said we would go swimming again and it rained. She was disappointed and that combined with all the new rules had gotten to her.

I waited until she had gone to bed before I had my meltdown. Peridically a verse would run through my mind. "Be strong and courageous! Do not tremble or be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go." (Joshua 1:9) I didn't want to hear that though. I just wanted to sleep and forget about things. I know that both of us are being disciplined thorough this experience. And if she feels anything like I do, we're both exhausted. . .

1 comment:

Goes On Runs said...

your day sounds an awful lot like mine...... micah is 14 months old and most of the day is spent saying "nyet." but i have to remind myself that is the most loving thing to teach him to live within boundaries so that one day he will know the great and expansive freedom it is to live inside the boundaries of god's great discipline. it hate it somedays because frankly somedays i just don't care if he plays with the cell phone or the remote control or steps on the dog or sits on his toys..... but "da" one day means lots of days recovering ground lost. les, you are loving her as christ loved his church by saying "no" because you have said "yes" in so many ways that dont' seem tangible or "fun." stay strong mom - i pray for re-entry with the other kiddos!!!!! grace & peace!!!!