My daughter, I love her to bits, but she can sometimes drive me up the wall. She’s suffering from pre-teenage syndrome, which causes parents and child to have unnecessary arguments about eating food that’s served and going to bed – my daughter is only 5 years old!
In her early days, she would do as she was told, no questions asked. Now, she will question every task we as parents give her or decisions that affect her civil rights such as bed time, brushing teeth, putting on pyjamas, put on her seat belt…the list goes on.
So, yesterday evening, we were having food that I made. I would consider myself as a decent cook, not like Jamie Oliver or Gordon Ramsay, but I can cook a mean roast and make tasty soups.
A portion of homemade mushroom soup was served to all of us and 3 out of 4 started to eat – good sign. However, my daughter was in a chatty mood and was talking about anything and everything. We normally don’t mind and find it amusing talking to our daughter about Global warming, recession, the Universe and Charlie Brown (her horse at horseback riding).
But, we still want to make sure the kids get food before bedtime. As parents, you gently remind your child to eat the food and you also have to set some boundaries and rules, e.g. “If you don’t eat your food in the next 10 minutes (when the long arm on the clock is pointing at 10), then you are going to bed“. She fully understood this, as she immediately started to question which time zone and whether it was 10 past 7, 8 or 9?
– smart ass kid
40 minutes into her soup, nice and cold at this stage, I gave her, her final warning. 3 minutes later we marched off to bed. This did NOT impress her at all. Whatever she could grab on the way upstairs, holding on to, was grabbed. You can still spot the claw marks on the walls. Calmly, I instructed her to get ready for bed, brush her teeth and put on her pyjamas. Through tears and blabbering (which I can only assume were some ancient Maya curses she learned from her mum), she finally finished up and went into bed. No goodnight kiss for daddy tonight.
My wife arrived upstairs shortly after she was in bed, wanting to explain to our daughter why she had been put to bed without finishing daddy’s wonderful mushroom soup. Both of them like to discuss things, so they lay in my daughters bed for the next 20 minutes, discussing what happened at the dinner table. It soon emerged that my daughter was disappointed with my wife, for forcing her upstairs – she wasn’t upset with me, but blamed my wife, for making dad do what he did. And, she by the way didn’t like my delicious mushroom soup – I was devastated.
She, my daughter that is, even went as far as having a peaceful Gandhi moment, refusing to fall asleep until she got some food. No screaming, crying or other actions to get her point across, just sitting there staring at her teddy, looking for sympathy. Unfortunately this protest backfired, as she fell asleep within 10 minutes of protesting, while hugging Nana (her teddy bear).
Anyway, happy days. My daughter still loves me – sorry love.
Goodnight my daughter, and thanks for bursting my bubble and not joining Gordon Ramsay’s “The F Word” competition.