It seems most afternoons between 4pm-5pm there is a meltdown around here. Those with young kids are, I am sure, very familiar with this end-of-the-day falling apart period of time. Kids are tired, hungry and are done with sharing, cooperating and getting along!
This afternoon’s meltdown was a result of Gabriela (4 years) “borrowing” and wearing Juanita’s shoes (Juanita is on the edge of turning 6). I didn’t witness it, but I believe Gabriela got whacked as a result of her thievery. She came into the house weeping. Juanita remained outside wailing.
I happened to be in the house when all this unfolded. The mamas were un-phased by the drama and continued with their felting that we had been working on. I decided to take this conflict on.
One of the biggest challenges our mamas are having right now is parenting. Overwhelmed, outnumbered and with very few parenting skills, they are really struggling. We are working closely with them to help them develop new tools as loving and firm parents (with absolutely no hitting). Modelling parenting skills seems to be one of the methods that really assists them.
So… I modelled a playful and firm way of dealing with Gabriela. I brought her on to my lap and removed the shoes. I gave them to Juanita who immediately stopped crying when she had her shoes back on her feet. Gabriela continued to cry and I suggested that I help her find her shoes. More tears and no understandable replies.
Meanwhile, Alejandra (2) toddled out of the house. A moment later she was back with Gabriela’s shoes! With the sweetest look on her face, she handed the shoes to Gabriela! And I was ready with camera to catch, for me, was the sweetest moment of my day!
What was the sweetest moment of your day today?