Today is my birthday. Although my relationship with my birthdays is fairly complex I was actually looking forward to the day. Daddy bought me a gorgeous wedding band eternity ring which I was very excited about wearing. We had a lovely family afternoon planned. The sun was shining. Daddy was taking the afternoon off work and we had decided to go out to our local Zoo park where we have season tickets and then out for a family dinner. What I didn't factor was that today Katie's behaviour imitated one of those children from Super Nanny! She has been exhibiting all the signs of the condition L.G.S., otherwise known as Little Git Syndrome! She had a particularly bad dose of it today and has pretty much spoiled much of the afternoon. In fact she went straight to bed after we got home from the restaurant, although she is currently still doing all she can to mess about. Daddy is dealing with it! I'm staying out of it now! (edit: I gave in and went up and settled her again and now all is quiet!).
I'm really not sure what today has been all about (although when reviewing the day in my mind I remembered a similar situation when it was Daddy's birthday as well on another family day out). She was fine this morning and very excited to give me a present and two gorgeous cards this morning but things took a turn for the worse when I picked her up from pre-school. She reacted badly to me comforting a friend's young daughter who is feeling very poorly today with tonsillitis. Katie forced her off me with a disgusted look on her face. Now this reaction isn't anything new at the moment. She is currently going through a phase of finding it hard when I help other children and is experiencing feelings of jealousy. We talk about how she is feeling and I have tried to explain the difference between the love I have for her and how I might feel about other children. I know this is a fairly common issue with children and is part of our attachment process. I'm not entirely sure what has triggered it at the moment because she seemed to have moved on from these feelings about a year ago and seemed very secure. She has now been with us for two years which was about the time that she had been in foster care. I wonder if some internal clock is feeling a little insecure at the moment or whether it's something to do with talking about adopting another child?
By the time we got home she was in a pretty difficult mood. Her pre-school teacher commented to me this morning that she wasn't particularly well behaved at school yesterday and this is something we are seeing at home. "Moaning Myrtle" and "Belligerent Brenda" are currently two common visitors to our house. Katie seems generally tearful and grouchy. I am currently wondering this evening if she is coming down with something. She had a cold last week but doesn't seem unwell at the moment and she shouldn't be over-tired as we have a strict bedtime routine.
I managed to get her to rally when we arrived home and we had some of the birthday brownies that we made yesterday and had a lovely cuddle. About 20 minutes later she seemed to suddenly just switch into major naughty mode. Like someone had flicked a switch. Lots of arguing, spitting and hitting. The atmosphere in the house thickened and I could feel myself wanting to internally combust. I put her on Time-out after the hitting and spitting incident and sat in the lounge to calm myself down. Daddy arrived home soon after and we went off to the zoo. Katie did a grand job of scooting all around the park but she was generally stroppy and argumentative for the whole afternoon. Things didn't improve at the restaurant and we left after we'd finished dinner, with Katie in tears because we decided enough was enough and we weren't staying for dessert. Arriving home things deteriorated even more and bedtime wasn't a particularly pleasant affair with Katie having a total meltdown and as predicted, has just wet herself.
What on earth is going on with her? She seems desperate for negative attention. She gets so much positive attention that there isn't really any need for that. Is she just jealous because it's my birthday and the attention wasn't completely on her? Is she tired at the moment? Is it just one of those phases? We have noticed that when she moves forward in one developmental area, she tends to fall back on her behaviour. She has been making huge steps forward with being dry at bedtime and her communication and literacy is zooming on. I wonder if this is why we are having all this challenging behaviour? Is it that she simply needs to start school to absorb and channel some of her intelligence and energy? Is it all of these things combined? All I know is that I'm glad she's now in bed. I love her so much but today, I, don't like her behaviour very much at all. I now feel like I want to have a glass of wine, not because it's my birthday but because it will help me unwind from a particularly challenging day.
I will get up and start again tomorrow and hope that tomorrow is an improved, happier, day but for today I feel like saying...
Happy Bloomin Birthday to me..........