about a month ago miss e was going hysterical before we put her to bed. she didn’t want to turn off the lights, she kept thrashing around as i held her, she didn’t want her dad to sing her her bedtime song, she kept crying. she wanted us to read her another book, she wanted to play with her legos, she wanted her bubble wrap (she loves this second to boogie bear), she finally settled on “talk, talk, talk,” she kept saying. we weren’t sure what she meant by that but i promised i would talk to her after she gave her dad a goodnight kiss.
so i held my weepy daughter in my arms and i sat in the armchair that was in her room and began to talk to her about her day. surprisingly, she calmed down and started listening to my story about her day. where we went, what we ate, what she did and what i did. i asked her some questions but she didn’t respond so i continued my monologue. then i sang her goodnight song and put my quiet child in her crib. her evening ended without another sniffle or peep. phew!
often times i hope and pray that episodes like that only happen once in a blue moon. alas this wasn’t one of those cases, and miss e had the same fit the next evening. so i promised her that we can talk again, and we “talked” for about ten minutes, this time she sniffled all the way through but she didn’t protest when i kissed her goodnight. so the following night, to avoid another bout of crying, while we were putting the toys away, i promised miss e that we can have our “talk.” we went through our bedtime songs without any protest, and after baba left the room she immediately said, “mmm…lemme see…” like she had been thinking about what she wanted to talk about!
ever since then we have added this 5-10 minute chat to miss e’s bedtime routine. there’s no rushing and no agendas. i find myself looking forward to our “talk” every night. it’s been a sweet way for us to reflect together on what happened during the day–the good, the bad, and find humor in the slightly “ugly.” (miss e is very frank and not ashamed to point out what she and mama did wrong. it’s definitely amusing to hear miss e’s interpretation of our day.)
p.s. miss e and baba also have their night-night chat when it’s mdh’s turn to put her to bed.