I am beginning to learn that children can be quite crafty. Beginning to learn is maybe not the right statement…I have been watching this craftiness slowly emerge over the last 24 months so it really isn’t that much of a surprise. But you can just see the wheels turning in their little heads sometimes. Lovey is fast approaching her 2nd birthday and it amazes me just how resourceful she can be…just how tricky. Now, it has taken me a little while to catch on to her tactics but I have noticed that right around bedtime she cycles through them like clockwork…on the off chance I will fall for one of them. Is it possible she is consciously TRYING to manipulate me???
7:30 p.m. I announce “bedtime in 30 minutes.” I walk up to the clock on the wall and say “when this big hand gets on the 12, it’s time for bed.” (Even though I know she has no idea yet how to tell time…)
7:45 p.m. “Bedtime in 15 minutes. Do you want me to read you a story?” “No”
7:55 p.m. “Bedtime in 5 minutes.” I hold up 5 fingers. Lovey glances up at the clock for a brief moment. “Do you need a drink?” “No”
8:00 p.m. “Bedtime” Lights out…
STALL TACTIC #1) “Dinner?” She runs out to the kitchen and begins to push her highchair out from the counter. (I will admit that I fell for this one a couple of times. I mean…I couldn’t send my little one off to bed with a hungry tummy!! But after a couple of nights of squishing applesauce and spitting out half-masticated cheese I just KNEW she was up to something and filling a hungry tummy wasn’t it… Now the response is “we already ate dinner…it’s time for bed.” 8:15 p.m. Little Lovey has run out of ideas…I guess it really is time for bed.
STALL TACTIC #2) “Change Di-per?” After wrestling and fighting to get every diaper changed all day long, NOW she is suddenly offering a change? Something is definitely up here……”Your dydie is clean…it’s time for bed.”
STALL TACTIC #3) “Bath?” What child wants a second bath within two hours? “We just took a bath, love…it’s time for bed.”
STALL TACTIC #4) “Read Book?“ ”Sweetie, I asked you if you wanted to read a book and you said no. It’s time for bed.”
STALL TACTIC #5) “Play Toys?” “We’ll play with toys tomorrow…it’s time for bed.”
STALL TACTIC #6) “Juice, Juice?” “I’ll get you a drink, but it’s time for bed.”
8:20 p.m. Sound asleep
I am sure it will be no time before she comes up with some new stall tactics. If you have experienced any that are surely coming my way, please help this tired mom out with a little advanced notice of what I can expect…perhaps I can cut Lovey off at the pass and save us both a little grief…