You are now a mature, wise, almost five year-old. There are so many things that you can do! You can use the toilet, brush your own teeth, dress yourself, put your dinner plate away, swing without pushes, write several words, read several words, and – possibly most importantly – operate the TV remote. You are a skilled young lady.
But not lately. Lately you have experienced a sudden and inexplicable regression. Now you want help when you brush your teeth. Now you want pushes on the swing. Now you NEED help getting your own clothes on.
Just last week you and I had a very intense stand-off regarding who was going to pull up your underpants. On your part it involved crocodile tears, stomping, pleading, and glares that would were probably intended to melt my face. On my part it involved encouragement, then negotiation, then commands, then leaving the room, and finally a very real ultimatum (Great – my parenting has devolved in to hostage negotiation…perhaps parenting has always been that way?).
In the end, you pulled up your underpants. We hugged. You promised to listen better. I told you I loved you.
Fast forward to this morning. Another morning of negotiating you in to your clothes. I lay in bed and prepared myself to take on the day. Kitten, I heard you pop out of your bedroom and then I heard this conversation with Daddy:
Kitten: Daddy, can I go see the puppy?
Daddy: Kitten, I’ve got to take him outside to pee. Are you dressed? You can’t come unless you’re dressed.
Kitten: Ok, Daddy! Don’t take him out without me! I’m almost ready! Wait for me! I’m coming! I’m all dressed!
What?? Seriously?? I sat bolt upright in bed in time to see Kitten march passed my bedroom door fully clothed, complete with socks and shoes. No argument. No negotiation. What magic is this??
Thank you, magic puppy, you fluffy motivator!!