Monday, December 15, 2008
Baths, Tantrums, and Fire Breathing Dragons
On Saturday night my family was at a Christmas party and came home later than Pumpkin's usual bedtime. We asked her if she'd like to go straight to bed and skip her nightly bath, but she typically loves her bath and declined our offer. Sunday night, Pumpkin refused her bath, which was weird, but we had company so I was happy to skip it. This evening, before starting the bath and bed routine, we were testing out our gas fireplace. Pumpkin was nervous about it but we assured her that she would be perfectly fine as long as she didn't touch the glass. She then went off to play for 15 minutes or so. When I told her that it was time for a bath, she refused. I didn't want to skip it another night, especially given that she hasn't mastered the whole potty training thing and is often a bit too gross to not be bathed. I also didn't want her to think that she could dictate to us whether or not she has a bath. A tantrum ensued, but I stayed the course and bathed her while she kicked and screamed. I kept asking her why she didn't want her bath but she just kept insisting that she had to go to bed right then and there. After all was said and done, and I was tucking her into bed, I lay down beside her to see if I could get an understanding of what the problem actually was. She told me that the fire was going to get her. She was afraid that the fire-breathing dragon was going to burn her bed, and wreck all her stuff. Now for the past month or so, Pumpkin has been obsessed with Sleeping Beauty, and has watched the movie many times. She has also watched Shrek a few times, and often asks me to read The Paper Bag Princess. All three stories have dragons in them, but she has never expressed a fear of them. She actually seems to be enthralled with them. Nonetheless, I spent the next few minutes trying to ensure her that dragons weren't real, and that nothing was going to happen to her, and that the fire was going to stay in the fireplace. When she was finished listening, she turned her back to me and asked me to go to my own room. My heart broke a little. I felt that I had let her down somehow. The days of simple maintenance are over.
Posted by Tania at 9:39 p.m.