Saturday, August 6, 2011

I have a new mission for Ponce de Leon

My oldest just spent a week at "Aunt Heather Camp" - she visited my sister and her family in North Carolina.  This is the third summer of "camp" - I meet my sis halfway and hand Lorelei off; then we usually plan a visit for the whole family the following week.  My sister always raves about how wonderful Lorelei is - so polite and helpful and gets along so well with her cousins.  This time while we were there, she even used Lorelei as an example to my six-year-old nephew, "See, Lorelei always takes her plate to the kitchen without being asked." 

Who is this child and why can't she live with me?

In the car yesterday, about 30 minutes into the 7.5 hour drive home, Lorelei says, "How long have we been driving?  When are we going to get there?"  The child knows how to tell time, she's been on this route at least four times a year for the past 7 years - she knows the deal, so it was just all about pushing buttons.  Next she was bored, then hungry, then had a stomach ache, then a headache.  All offers of books, games, movies, snacks or suggestions on how to feel better were met with sighs, eye rolls and yelling, "That won't work!"

Today she had some friends over (I was technically babysitting, but they are close friends that she loves to play with).  She was a complete pill.  After lunch I gathered everyone up to go to the park.  I thought I'd run them around, make 'em sweat then take them to Rita's for a treat.  As soon as we got there Lorelei started in with, "it's hot, this place is boring, can I sit in the car?, can we go home?"  She climbed on a fence directly beside the large sign that said "No climbing on fence."  She picked fights with me, her friends, her sisters and basically badgered me until I gave up and left the park.  We did not go to Rita's (she even did a little sarcastic fist pump along with a "Yes!" when I told her no Rita's).

Then, this afternoon when I was trying to get Violet to wake up from her unauthorized 5pm nap, Lorelei was super helpful and sweet.

What gives?  I guess it's because she got her way, I gave in and left the park before I was ready.  She pushes me and pushes me (she does it to her dad, too) until I can no longer remain calm.  She just does not know how to back down.  She has to have some sort of giant blow up to act as the reset button. 

I hate that.  I don't want to lose my cool, I don't want to yell, I don't want to punish.  By the end of the park visit she was grounded from computer and TV through Sunday.  And it didn't work.  I kept very calmly adding days and she just kept pushing until I lost it. 

Forget finding the Fountain of Youth, can someone please tell me where the Well of Patience is hidden?


  1. It was nice to meet you at the hocoblogs get-together. Sorry I couldn't finish a whole sentence -- 3-year-olds will do that to you! We had to flee after he hit his head and seemed to realize he hadn't napped.

    -- Sarah Kelber (from The Sun)

  2. It was nice to meet you, too! I felt like I wasn't really able to talk to people, either. Kid-friendly or not, it's still hard to manage a conversation when they are around!