Wednesday, January 25, 2012
"Momma. I promise. I will never..."
Someone's been feeling pretty badly about an incident when we were leaving the park yesterday, and after two days and well over a dozen freely volunteered apologies, I doubt she will ever bite anyone ever again.
We'd gone through a biting phase that lasted a terrible six months from 2 to 2 1/2, but after more than a year without biting I was rather surprised when, mid tantrum about leaving the park and ending our play date, she reached over and bit my arm. Hard (although thankfully not hard enough to break the skin this time... I do still have a scar from one of those year old bites!). There was yelling.
After about a minute calming down in her stroller I went over and showed her the teeth marks and explained that when she got mad and bit me, it really hurt. She went from outraged at the injustice of leaving the park to very quiet. "I meant to bite this right here Momma." She pointed to the stroller.
I paused for a moment. Do we begin to learn about lying now? Sadie's a pretty honest little kid. She's wonderful at pretending and imagining, but she doesn't usually tell outright lies to get out of trouble. I decided to cut that tendency off immediately.
"No you didn't mean to bite the stroller Sadie. That's a lie. And lies make God sad. You need to tell him you're sorry."
"I'm sorry God." The words were tearful. "I'm sorry Momma. I'm sorry for biting your arm!!!!" Tears.
I told her that it was okay and that I loved her and we headed home. After we got home and Daddy came home from class she told him what happened (and then I repeated it because she could hardly be understood) and I thought it would probably drop... But periodically throughout the day:
"I'm sorry Momma! I'm sorry I bit your arm." And then I'd tell her not to worry about it. It was over. I love her no matter what, even if she did bite my arm again. And that was when the new apology began with the promise that she had no biting plans in the future.
I think we may now really be past the biting phase with her. And oh how I hope Mae doesn't go through the same thing, when she turns 2! Now to get Sadie distracted so she stops worrying... Sometimes accepting that we've been forgiven something is the hardest part. Thankfully a three year old is easily distracted.