I hope this email finds you in good health. Today is 4th of December 2015. You are now about 2 years, 1 month and 3 days. I am now about 8 months pregnant with your sister.
As of now your father is not around, and is on business trip for 3 days, leaving you and I alone at home.
Last night you were not in your best behaviour, and I don’t blame you. Your cognitive development is still young and developing and this means you are unable to manage your emotions, you are lacking understanding of your own experiences and senses. I know that you’ve been missing me for the day and you need my love. On top of that, you are also missing your father whom you haven’t seen in more than 24 hours.
However, last night, I was really tired. Being heavily pregnant makes me get tired easily, and lifting all the heavy grocery, carrying my handbag and your nursery bag and you – all at once made me very tired. You were lovely when we had our quick grocery trip -helping me load the shopping basket and pulling the basket behind me. At home, after dinner, when I wanted to grab the the clothes at the backyard, you wanted to follow me. I knew you didn’t want to be left alone in the house, so I let you follow me but I asked you not to touch the cats. The cats gave you rashes and HMD. So the last thing I want is you getting any more rashes.
You obeyed my instructions, but the cats made it hard for you to reach out. You tried to shoo the cats away but in the process you were close to touching the cats and I had to intervene with little energy I had. I know your intention was to follow my instructions but the cats really got to my nerves. It was my protective instincts. As we went back into the house, you didn’t want to go in. You wanted to keep wearing your favourite shoes that Abah bought for you.
At that time I was already burnt out. It was 9pm, I was sticky and sweaty. I needed a shower -RIGHT NOW. On top of that, you had pooped in your diaper – and to me that calls for an immediate action. I didn’t have the energy to respectfully talk to you out of it. I lost it, and I demanded you to come in. My reaction has caused you to rebel and even worse, I forcefully carried you into the house, took your shoes off -and all hell break loose.
You were screaming on top of your lungs. I was at the edge of insanity. I picked up your nursery bag, my handbag and you your threw your bottles to express your anger. I was really mad and frustrated, but I know it’s not your fault. and in actuality I wasn’t even mad at you. I had to release my anger somewhere, I kicked your crocodile softbook that you were playing with earlier. I too, was throwing a tantrum. Unfortunately you saw that and you it made you frustrated, you picked up your softbook and asked me not to kick it.
Sara, at that point of time I really have lost it. In anger, I asked you to come with me upstairs but you refused. So I said, (yelled) “Up to you! Mama is going upstairs!” I went up, with all the bags and the fresh laundry. You cried even more, on the top of your lungs, crying for mama, “Mama! Mama!” My heart broke. Panting, I carried you upstairs and I undressed you to clean you up. I even gave you a quick shower. After toweling you dry, I distanced myself from you, just to take a moment. I texted Abah my ranting to let off some steam.
You are a smart girl. You found your diaper on your own, put it own, and you even put on your own chosen pants and onesie. It’s not your pyjamas, but as long as you get dressed, I didn’t mind. Then, I went to shower. I took my time, to gain back my control. The cool shower washed away the sweat and anger. I felt refreshed and regained composure. Then, I went out of shower to find that you are building a tall tower with your Megablock.
However, you still weren’t so happy. In fact, you asked me to go back into the shower, which meant you needed some space, too.
Abah called, and talked to you for a while. Once abah’s voice dissapeared, you cried again. Now I’m convinced that you are missing abah. I gave you your favourite treat, Pepero while I performed isya’ prayer. After that your mood slowly improved as I regained my composure. Perhaps the fact that you were able to sense my stress and disappointment made you upset too.
Sara,I always try to be gentle and respectful parent because I believe that will be best for your emotional development. However, sometimes I do slip and loose control. For one moment of lost control, it makes me worried for days – fear of being counter productive of all the work put into nurturing you. Fear of jeopardizing your emotional development and ultimately – the kind of relationship that we are shaping for each other. I also fear of damaging your trust that we’ve built since you were born.
I know that all you really need at this age is unconditional love – it’s the most important thing at this tender age to build trust, independence and healthy emotional development.
I will continue to improve myself. I will learn not to let the worst of me get to me. It wasn’t you, and I had no excuse to show my anger at you. You are kid -and throwing tantrums is what kids do -not adults. My only hope is that you forgive me and this won’t cause a dent in our precious relationship and trust we’ve built.
p.s, We created an email account for our daughter – it’s like a time capsule.