Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Inside Voice

I've been feeling pretty confident in my ability to handle most any mood my daughter could toss my way, but this afternoon J Bean threw me a curve ball. The two of us had a pleasant and uneventful trip to the store, but within a minute of entering my daughter spun her head around three times and started to levitate out of the shopping cart... Well, not exactly, but you get the picture. Outbursts happen occasionally and at first I wasn't too surprised that some action, or lack thereof, on my part had offended J Bean. "What's wrong? Is the buckle too tight? Did you want some water? A snack maybe?" I exhausted an extensive list of my own ideas for distraction or redirection and a few from helpful strangers, who probably just wanted their ears to stop bleeding. I attempted several forms of entertainment (including song and a short dance number). I mixed in efforts of soothing, holding, patting and will admit I even gave bribing a try. I tried carrying her and allowing her to walk. All resulted in more crying and most with replies in the vocal range of a pterodactyl. I began to doubt my resolve to finish the errand we had begun.... perhaps she's sick, is the seat pinching her, a bug bite anywhere, what did she eat? After 10 minutes, I was beaten... I grabbed a few more things on the list that were nearby and resolved to return another day. However, before we approached the register, the little one began to calm down and within a few more minutes was basically back to her usual self, albeit with red eyes and tear tracks on her face. We finished our shopping, beat the rush crowds home and had a wonderful evening with VeeVee who arrived home shortly after. I was telling my wife about the antics at the store when J Bean interrupts with an animated laugh and a proclamation of "Funny!" She does this from time to time, seemingly because she enjoys the adult reactions of more laughter, but this time I'm not so sure she wasn't just enjoying the laugh at my expense.

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