Last night at dinner, Adrian was exhausted. It has been a busy holiday season, with lots of activities and visiting family. All of this means, we have not been following our normal routine and have had late bedtimes and missed naps. Yesterday was Adrian’s second day in a row of missed nap and coughing fits, and his puffy eyes and bad attitude showed it. As his little face crumpled and he began to cry over not getting something (I’m not even sure what it was he wanted!), I said, “Sweetheart. It’s been a long day. After dinner, let’s go upstairs and get your jammies on and get ready for bed.”
“No,” he tearfully protested, but let me pick him up and take him upstairs.
I dressed him in his PJ’s, brushed his teeth, and read him a story. Then we went into his room and the fateful moment arrived.
Adrian crumpled into a screaming ball on the floor.
“NO!!! NO PUT ME IN MY BED!! Me no want to! AAAAAHHHHHHH! You be mean-a-me! You BOSSIN me!”
I rubbed his back. “I guess I am bossing you. But Mommies are the boss. And I love you very, very much and I can see that you’re tired. I know you don’t want to go to bed, but you need to. I love you and I know you’ll feel a lot better if you get your rest.”
Adrian looked up at me with his tear-stained face and smiled. “Ok, Mommy. I love you, too. Thank you for loving me enough to set healthy boundaries.”
Then he kissed me, climbed into bed, and fell asleep with a smile on his face.
Well…..ok….that’s one version of how it went….orrrrr maybe it went more like this:
Adrian continued to scream bloody murder and have a fit on the floor, yelling “NO! NO! YOU BE MEAN-A-ME! YOU BE MEAN!” until I finally wrestled him into bed and left. He fell asleep crying.
But I think the first version is what he really meant by all the screaming.