Giving up the battle...

Jun 11, 2014

 photo 014_zps8e868484.jpg photo 016_zpsfd9d7fd1.jpg photo 010_zps01e3d634.jpg

I have officially given up.  My dreams of cute frilly dresses and hip skinny jeans have been completely shattered time after time and I just can't do it anymore.  The arguments that constantly stem from "help me get dressed" just are not worth it.  She asks me to pick out her clothes, so I give her options, that is what you are supposed to do right, give them options?  Options that I think she will like, and she turns them all down.  From there we just escalate into the same cycle as the day before and the day before that.  At this point, I realize that I have given up all control to a four year old.  I have allowed her to manipulate me into thinking that this day, maybe just this one day, will be different from the 50 that came before it.  That today, just maybe she will put on something different than the three same dresses we have been rotating through for weeks on end.  I pray that the hem will tear and I can convince her to try something new. 

This isn't new, these arguments that I cycle through all day with my budding lawyer.  We do this every day, clothes, food, bed time.  We relive the same battles, the same way. I say the same words and so does she, reciting them from memory, like some sort of messed up screen play.  We do the power play game, who is going to win this time?  How did I even get into a situation in which I am asking myself who is going to win, me, or a smaller version of me?  How did we get into these battles, when did they start and how do I make them end?  Do I fight till the death, do I put my foot down over something as simple as wearing the same dress over and over even after asking for my opinion?  And when did my four year old turn into an emotional teenager, demanding attention and then rebelling when she gets it?   Why do I even care?

Truth is, I don't care.  I don't care what she wears, but I do care how we are interacting while deciding.  I hate these arguments, I hate the way that I respond to her being so stubborn and I hate the way she throws my "I am not doing this with you today" right back at me when she is just as frustrated.  We are like sisters, Scarlett and I, when we love we love hard, but when we fight, we fight just as hard, facilitating both with equal emotion and vigor. 

My mom and my sister were like this.  I remember growing up and listening to them in the background of my life, always arguing about nothing and everything.  Neither one wanting to give up the fight and be caught with the second to last word.  They loved each other naturally, but they had their way.  I on the other hand sat in the corner, head down, murmuring my "yes, mam" and "no, sirs", a raging argument on the inside and always thinking "I should have said" after it was way too late. 

I never thought I would be this way, never knew I had this much emotion, this many motherly truisms constantly rubbing at the tips of my lips. Never knew I had so many words to say when I think I am right.  And maybe I did all along, I just never had anyone to push me enough to use them.   Unfortunately, the person that sees and knows this side of me just as deeply as her own, is my poor four year old daughter. 

So, with all of that said, I am trying to change my ways.  To be more aware of the way we talk to each other.  To speak calmly, to reason, and when necessary, demand.  I have already engrained an unfortunate pattern that will likely take years to reverse.   But, that is one battle that I think is actually worth fighting.