A mixed up kinda day today.
Lu is enjoying a pushing boundaries to the absolute limit headspace at the moment.
Leaving me struggling with finding ways to engender the values I want to see in my child, without coercing. And I do struggle with it. I was never modeled emotionally mature and respectful ways to influence a child's behaviour without shaming, ridiculing, manipulating, bribing or physically abusing. So I'm kinda making it up as I go along.
I am constantly checking and rechecking myself - my words, my tone, my message. It gets freakin' exhausting during trying times such as these. Most times I get it right (practice you see, it's a wonderful habit former!) and some times I find myself flinching, apologizing and asking Lucy if I can take that back and say it again a different way. She's very understanding *smile*.
Her current choice of expressing her power is choosing to ignore.
And that's just not okay with me.
Ignoring Pat when she walks in the room and says good morning.
And again this evening, ignoring Pat (again :o\ ) when she was being bid good night.
And it's absolutely a power thing. These two get on famously.
What I don't want to do is enforce Lucy to say good morning or good night, just because she is being spoken to. I believe that's just setting her up to have sex just because her boy/girlfriend asks her to - or pop a pill just because her bestie asks her to. Not only that, I want Lucy to communicate authentically. But in ignoring Pat, in my eyes, she is disregarding her as a person, not acknowledging her existence. And that kind of disrespect just does not fly with me. I'm hardball on this one.
So tonight, I explained that she did not have to say good night if it didn't feel right, but it's kind and respectful to acknowledge a person when they speak to you - in the way of eye contact in the very least. Hopefully, what I did was provide a compromise, an alternative, a boundary that was delivered respectfully and allowed her to still maintain her sense of autonomy, of power. Because I think power's important and I in no way want to take that away from my daughter - but I do see it as partly my responsibility to teach her how to use it for good *smile*.
A couple of 'lil snippets from today. She wanted to practice words :o)