The 3-year-old is quite a kid. This week we have pushed her to her absolute limits. There has been no routine, little familiarity. She got plenty of exercise those three days at the reunion, but the days surrounding have been strapped in, using colouring books, toys and the iPad to keep her from going crazy.
(Also: People did this before technology?)
It’s been agreed the kid’s a superstar. Truly awesome. Handled everything really well. She kept us up to date with what she needed through the whole trip.
A few times she started crying purely from being overwhelmed. “What’s wrong?” “I don’t know,” she sputtered through tears. We would put on her music and sing along, pull over and get a treat or stop for a while so she could run around a bit.
For the greater percentage of this trip she’s been happy, cooperative, easy-going. We pushed her and she showed us her greatness.
And then sometimes she pushed back. She got mad – though she’s learning to tell me “I’m mad” and I tell her that’s okay to have that feeling. She wanted what she wanted right then and there. She stomps and yells back. She doesn’t cooperate.
That one moment it’s easy to forget all the good. It’s so easy to get frustrated with her. Why so easy?
On the balance what we have here is a fantastic little kid. On the balance she demonstrated to the family why we adore her so damn much.
What we forget in that moment is that nine times out of 10 this kid is a superstar, and that tenth time is a test for both of us.