Wherein my mad parenting skills fail me
Posted by That One Girl
We had a play date yesterday with some new friends of ours. They hosted, so we got to play with someone else’s toys, trash someone else’s backyard, eat someone else’s food. I’ll never understand why this is so awesome to kids, but it’s like Christmas, birthdays, and a trip to Chuck E. Cheese wrapped up in chocolate and rolled in Pixie Stick dust. The girls were excited to see their friends, and very curious about this new place we were going. What toys will they have? What will their house look like? Will there be cookies? Can I go potty? CAN I PLAY WITH THEIR SNAKE?!
As it turns out, a snake wasn’t the only pet they have. They had 2 dogs: a chihuahua and the other one was big and gentle. I’d like to point out, both the girls were entranced by the snake, and I’m pretty sure I will be Cult Leader’s first target if I don’t get her one. Anyway, Evil Genius, who happens to love pointing out animals, heard the dogs before she saw them. “A woof-woof!” She was really excited about these faceless woof-woofs until…
…they rushed into the house.
You guys, my kid Lost Her Shit. And had about 5 cows. And then Lost More Shit. This was the most hysterical I’ve ever seen this child. She was shaking from head to toe, screaming, burying her face in my shoulder. It was so sad! I had no idea how to deal with it. When Cult Leader Loses Her Shit, it’s usually just a matter of getting her out of the situation and giving her space until she’s done. But Evil Genius is my more even child. She doesn’t have a lot of tantrums, she doesn’t get hysterical, she doesn’t sob for hours. It’s the most helpless I’ve felt since, well, that one incident that I will write about later, because what kind of kid falls backward off a metal slide, hits the stairs on the way down, and is fine 5 minutes later? And what kind of mom is traumatized by such an event? This kid and this mom right here. It deserves a blog post.
But I digress.
I was totally helpless, and did the best I could to calm her fears. Apparently I sucked at it, because she wouldn’t let me put her down. I don’t know if you know this, but a 30 pound toddler isn’t easy to hold for long periods of time. I tried over and over to detach her from my neck, but apparently she was pretty fond of becoming my new necklace. There were moments where I could set her on the ground and she would be fine. She’d play with her friend, she’d chase the older girls, she’d be occupied by some toys, but then she’d hear the woof-woofs, or she’d see them, and she’d practically jump into my arms.
I think she’s scarred for life. This presents a problem, because my in-laws have a new dog at their house, and we are thinking about getting Cult Leader one. I have it on good authority that certain breeds of dogs are good for kids with ADHD, and I have this thing where I like helping my daughter cope with her brain. I’m not really sure how to help Evil Genius. Could I take her to an animal shelter and toss her in a cage full of dogs, much like our grandparents taught our parents how to swim my throwing them in the pool? No? Bad idea?
I guess we’ll play the wait and see game. If anyone has any tips, I’d be happy to take them. My girls are going to need enough therapy when they’re older; being traumatized by dogs isn’t something I want for them.