Saturday, January 29, 2011
project 365 photo: 01.29.2011
Cassidy's behavior has improved lately. A few months ago, right around her third birthday we had a really hard couple weeks. Nothing seemed to make sense with her behavior, nothing seemed to prevent meltdowns & nothing seemed to calm her down. We talked to her pediatrician & another doctor about what was going on because I know I am not a perfect parent. Far from it.
They told us this about our child: she is beautiful, bright & spirited. In their professional opinions Cassidy is a very spirited little girl who has tons of opinions & feels things very keenly. There is a disparity between where she is intellectually/developmentally & where she is emotionally/developmentally & that she hasn't learned the skills to handle her emotions.
It was good to hear, during the conversation that we are doing a lot of the right things such as teaching about feelings, not pushing "timeout" but instead talking about calming down time & calming her body, giving limited choices, letting her interact with more kids now (like preschool & Little Gym), etc. She did caution about trying to rationalize/reason with Cassidy which was a good reminder, since it ends in a power struggle when we engage her. A final suggestion was to begin using concrete, positive behavior reinforcement, something I had considered but thought she might be too young to understand. And, as evidenced by the grins above, it's working.
I know that this isn't rocket science & we aren't the first parents to have a very energetic, strong willed, imaginative child, but it's the first time we have done this. Most days we get through without both of us crying; some days we get through the day without either of us crying. Each day is a new adventure but, thankfully, we're in a better place today than we were three months ago.