It’s bedtime. The kids have brushed their teeth. Peanut has used the potty; Monkey is in his jammies. It’s Peanut’s turn to get in her jammies and then it’s reading time. In 20 or so minutes all will be quiet and Mommy and Daddy can have time alone, or so I think…
“I want to do it myself,” she says when I hold up the jammies. Great, I think. She needs to become a little more independent. Next thing I know she is yelling, “I can’t do it!” I reach for the jammies to help her and she grabs at them, “No!! I want to do it myself!”
95% of the time, bedtime all goes smoothly. Not tonight. It’s like a switch was flipped in her brain…all of a sudden she is unrecognizable. We go back and forth on the jammie issue a few times until she is screaming and kicking, and I half way expect her head to turn a complete 360 degrees. It doesn’t matter how calm my voice is or that I keep trying to figure out what she wants. She herself no longer knows what she wants.
Eventually I pick up her brother to read to him in another room and get him settled for bed before he, too, gets upset. The screaming continues down the hall a while longer until she is exhausted.
I know she will be out in minutes once her head hits the pillow. The tantrum stemming from the fact that at 3 she will no longer take a nap, and she wakes way too early – eventually it catches up to her. I wish tonight had been more peaceful, but at least tomorrow is another day.
Those are the moments I don’t miss! I don’t remember my kids going through that (probably selective memory) but my granddaughter had some pretty hysterical moments around that age for the same reason.