Negotiations

The Campground Kid has recently started negotiating in a different way. It’s kinda hard to describe how it’s different, or why it even feels like a thing, but it’s totally lovely and hilarious.

The lovely-and-hilariousness may not come across in words, so you have to picture this little face saying all the following very earnestly and  sweetly, with a little tilt of the head.

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“It’s Saturday because I NEED to watch a video”

“No, because I’m only little so I need to do jumps, not tidy up.”

“How ’bout we read the dictionary just one time before I get my nappy changed?”…. “No,  okay, how about just TWO more times?”

“Okay, you go get your water. I will meet you on the couch for a story”

“I change nappy and then I go to the trampoline. Okay, it’s a DEAL.” *shake hands*

“Okay. How ’bout I have just one biscuit and then I watch Puffins?”

“Can I have just ONE story before we go to the office?”… “Can you read it one more time, Mama?”

“But I’m little because I don’t want to go to sleep”

“Can you please just cuddle for one more minute?”

“Okay Mama, how about you stay here and sleep and Papa comes to the lounge and reads me a story”

(way more of that last one, please, kid!)

She hasn’t quite landed on the meaning of “because” yet. But you can see all the pieces coming together and it’s amazing.  I mean, I know it’s just normal kid stuff and I only find it amazing because she’s my kid. But this is also my blog, so I can talk about what I want. And development of language and reasoning is one of my most favourite parts of watching this kid grow, so here we are.

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Sometimes, though, her “negotiations” are not so lovely and hilarious and it sounds a bit more like this (you don’t need to picture the sweet voice and head tilt anymore!):

“NO, I DON’T WANT QUIET TIME, I WANT LOOOOUD TIME.”

“BUT I LIKE IT MESSY”

“I DON’T WANT TO BRUSH MY TEETH EVERY DAY”

“ARGHHHHHHHHGAGHHHHHHHH”

I suppose, maybe, just maybe, we’re straying out of negotiation with these ones…?

Surprisingly enough, when we get into this zone, me reflecting her words back and saying “Okay, how about we brush your teeth just one time and then we go to bed?” doesn’t yield the greatest results.  Maybe it’s because I don’t have that cute face and head tilt down..?

Seriously, though, usually these reactions are because she’s usually over-tired or over-hungry or over-stimulated, and any form of negotiation is pretty much pointless.  So we mostly listen, support, soldier on, and ride it out as best we can.

(Don’t get me wrong, sometimes we stern-voice and eye-roll and grit-teeth and get frustrated. We do okay, but I don’t at all want to suggest we deal with all toddlerness with grace and goodwill.)

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The more this kid grows, the more excited I am for each next step. Not because I’ve heard three is easy (I’ve heard the opposite, in fact), and not because I want to get past this stage (it’s frustrating, for sure, but a big part of me is tempted to stay here forever – she’s hilarious and awesome and amazing), but because I just love seeing how that little mind works and seeing the milestones-that-I-never-realised-would-feel-like-milestones. I never ever thought I’d be so amazed by my kid weaselling out of tasks, but now that we’re here, my brain is all like “oh, LOOK at her figuring out logic and reason and how to make things happen”, and as completely ordinary as it is, I’m impressed.

 

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