Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Beware the S!

Part of the challenge lately of raising a daughter is trying to guess, and then head off, what S might be upset about next. It’s almost like a sport now, in the way that armchair quarterbacking is a sport. I stare into her eyes to find that look that says, “I’m about to lose it!” I judge the environment – what’s on TV, what toy she’s holding, what toys her brothers are holding, barometric pressure. There is a complicated equation involving her total time slept, amount of food eaten the previous evening and, again, barometric pressure. I have charts and diagrams and reports of previous whinings (although past performance does not necessarily indicate future tears). And yet it’s still all a crapshoot. The crapshoot that is S, that is parenting.

Things that have upset the daughter to the point of tears in the past few days, in no particular order:

1) She had two cubes of ice in a cup and these cubes were her turtles – one boy, one girl. She named the turtles but forgot the boy turtle's/ice cube's name.
2) The seam of her sock didn’t hit the front of her toes just right.
3) She insisted on dressing herself for school even though I assured her that what she had on didn’t match. She was looking for an argument she didn’t get since I was okay with her going to school like that. She lost it as we left the house because she wanted the other clothes on. I called her bluff on that one. (The footnote for this item is that I found out later from Kristy that the outfit she wanted actually did match. Who knew?)
4) She put a sweater on in the morning and buttoned it all the way up, then decided as we walked out the door that she didn’t want to wear that sweater.
5) Shoes.