Growing Pains

Growing Pains

Bella does something to her hair while she’s asleep. Or maybe it’s Queen Mab and her flock of little people. Every morning when she awakes the hair above her forehead is teased and matted into a terrible mess that takes me forever to untangle.

I’ve made my own detangling spray with some conditioner and water in a $.99 spray bottle and applying that before bed and again right before brushing definitely helps… some. As does giving her a brush and letting her work on dolly’s “hair” while I attack the mess. But she always ends up crying (if she doesnt’ start the anticipatory crying before the comb touches her scalp) and I always end up apologizing, “I’m sorry, Bella. I’m sorry.”

And so this afternoon she hurt herself and said to me, “Sorry, mama. Sorry.”

Um. Yes, I’m sorry that you’re hurt; but I don’t think that means what you think it means, dear. But I’m not sure how to correct it.

* * *

Some time in the past week Bella has learned that when she hurts herself mama’s kisses make it all better. She comes to me with jammed fingers and barely bumped knees and I dutifully press my mouth to them a half dozen times. It’s more a game than anything else, I think.

Today she fell on her bottom while rushing over the threshold, a feat she manages at least once a day. But today she didn’t just pick herself up and she didn’t wail either. Instead she came over to the chair where I was sitting, telling me, “Ouch. Bum. Kiss, mama.” And so, thinking quickly, I kissed my fingertips and placed them on the sensitive area.

*  *  *

Oh well, at least she’s grown out of her previous experiments that began when she started trying to understand the word “ouch”. She’d pinch herself and say “ouch.” Oh dear. What other things can I inadvertently teach her?

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