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Little Miss Contrary, sick toddlers and un-conditional love

ImageOkay, so this Easter hasn’t been the easiest we’ve had. For the same reason the past Christmas or our visit to New York or many other occasions haven’t been the easiest. My toddler had yet another infection and after a nightmarish week was finally put on antibiotics on Friday and order has fragilely been restored by Sunday. I say fragilely because as soon as she was over the fever and the Paracetamol-induced snoozing clinginess and extreme mood swings kicked in.

One evening, after a fit over something ridiculous like “I didn’t want my shoes off!” that lasted 15 minutes and left us all completely drained, I rummaged the garage for “new” toys, in order to distract her attention and I came upon my stash of “for later” books. Books she got from friends and family at birthdays and special occasions but hadn’t been age appropriate at the time. Among them, three of the “Little Miss” collection, by Roger Hargreaves .

Because my Little Miss was in bed already I sat down with “Little Miss Contrary” and soon realised it was SO befitting for our situation. Little Miss Contrary says the opposite of what she thinks so that normally gives rise to a lot of misunderstanding and resentment. Or it would, in the grown-up world, where mums get as grumpy as a two-year old when facing negative statements in response to their well-meaning efforts.

Fortunately for Little Miss Contrary, Mr.Happy, who invited her to his birthday party, knows that she means no harm so he finds her negative comments funny, not hurtful. Oh, that sort of touched my heart, you see. Because I realised my girlie was being a Miss Contrary for a few days and she just needed a Mummy Happy who understood that she meant no harm. That negative statements didn’t mean she was rude or confrontational, they were the only way she knew to express how she felt.

I failed her a couple of times, even after that though. Toddler meltdowns are hard to “comprehend” and witness. I can only hope the other times when I showed her patience and respect will be the times she will choose to remember and reassure her of my un-conditional love. As I said to a friend this week regarding this situation: “I can only hope, right?”


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