Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Mom Gets a Time-Out

Whenever I talk about Abby's stubbornness, someone will often tell me something like, "Yep, that's a trait of Down syndrome." I have to bite my tongue because as far as I know the extra chromosome that Abby inherited wasn't the "stubborn" gene, but I'll save that rant for another post. What I usually say is something about how stubborn I am, and how she certainly came by it honestly. Most times when our stubborn natures clash, I can keep my head and talk myself out of it, but there are other times when I just can't let it go - bedtime tonight would fall into that latter category.

She'd been a bit goofy all afternoon, and sometimes her goofy teeters over into incorrigible, especially when she is tired. So to call a halt to it we hauled her off to bed. At this point she'd had a bath, but had stripped down to her undies, so our battle began by trying to get her into her jammies. In an effort to avoid me she ran to the bathroom, and had the brilliant idea to take another bath. When I followed her she'd lost the one article of clothing she'd been wearing, so now we had more clothes to put on. As she yelled at me to stop, I hefted her up and began carrying her back to her room. That's when she insisted she needed to go potty. For some reason instead of going potty she decided that she wanted a time-out (what?), and that she was going to use her toilet ring (that nifty little invention that prevents her from totally falling into the toilet) as her time-out spot (um...okay...).  So, she grabbed it off the toilet and ran for it. That's when the tug-of-war began. We must have been a sight, me yelling at her to give me the toilet seat, and Abby running into her bedroom, naked as the day she was born, waving that stinking seat just out of my grasp.

I finally got ahold of it and grabbed it out of her hands, telling her as I put it back on the toilet, "Now, DO NOT touch it!" And do you know what that little stinker did? Before she climbed up to finally go potty, she took both hands and rubbed the handles on the sides of the seat and said, "I'm touching it!" That's when I started gritting my teeth. When I went into Abby's room to tell Jason what she'd just done, I caught him laughing - I knew I would eventually see the humor in this, but now wasn't the time. I believe I muttered something like, "I am so mad!"

That's when he told me, "I've got this, why don't you go downstairs?" And so I took my "time-out" like a big girl and left him to it. It took about a half an hour before we were both ready to see each other. I heard her calling for me and when I got up there we said prayers, and then she told Jason to leave. I believe it took about 5 minutes (and two sips of water) before she told me, "Don't wanna Mama. Want Dada!" Too bad he'd mentioned when he left that he wasn't coming back up - and he didn't, but she was tired and soon she accepted that Mom was it. Eventually, I was able to convince her to put her "magic blanket" on and within three minutes (seriously - it took three minutes!) she was asleep.

I am able to laugh at her behavior now, and cut her some slack, because I can totally see "Little Elizabeth" pulling the same sort of stuff that Abby pulled tonight. So, I will laugh now, because if she continues on the track she's on, the teen years are going to be some doozies.

It seems that when I get frustrated, creating
something helps to calm me. Yesterday was
a particularly trying day at school, so I came
home to some sewing therapy. I made Abby this
shirt and she wore it to school today.  She looks
so old to me in this picture!

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