Apr 5, 2013

The Great Duckling

One of my jobs, as a mom, is to help my children  to learn what is dangerous and what is not in their life.
Little children have to learn lots of things during the day at home. Just the daily life at home must be very stressful for them. They have to learn how to live in a house, how to behave, what is right or wrong, etc.
Often they haven’t the ability to understand those things immediately, so parents have to talk and try different ways if talking is not enough.
Lots children’s fears start from that: the child is uncomfortable, starts to cry and hasn’t the ability (or words) to describe what’s wrong. On the other hand, the parent could not understand, and if doesn’t find a good way to talk, has to imagine what it could be. But sometimes it’s so difficult to understand that parents must try different ways to help the child.
And that’s exactly what happened to my little child and me!
She has always been a joyful girl with no fears, just new things to be careful of.
I’ve always known she doesn’t like to wash her hair very much but nothing more than that. She’s usually had her bath or shower without any problems since last year.
From that time, anytime I washed her hair she started crying and shouting and she didn’t want to wash her hair. I understood she didn’t like water in her eyes.
Personally, I didn’t experienced that annoyance and my older child never told me she was annoyed by water in her eyes.  So that’s my first time I faced this problem.
I asked her what was wrong but probably she hadn’t the right words to explain. She told me the water was burning her eyes, so I thought it was too hot for her.
It wasn’t the temperature!
Could it be the shampoo???
I told her I would be more carefully with the shampoo. She told me it was just the water
So, if the water in the eyes was the problem, I told her to “look at the ceiling” when I washed the hair.
Bad idea! 
When she looked at the ceiling she saw the water coming down and she started shouting and trying to come out the bath.
I tried to wash more gently, and using a container for some warm water in order to be more carefully of the direction of the water.
Reading a book I saw a little boy who covered his eyes with a towel.
Ok! Lets try!
Nothing again!
Months went by and I wasn’t able to find a solution. Meanwhile, having bath was getting more and more difficult for both of us.

duck400 Then I found a towel with a lovely duckling stitched on it.
It was a gift that was stuck in the pile of towels, I used it sometimes but without a special meaning. It was just one of her towels like any other.
I had an idea!
Dumbo can fly with a feather! The duckling would be our feather!
We started our bath time as always, and as I’d thought she didn’t want to. I put her in the warm water with all her water toys. I left her some time to play with water toys.
Then I told her it was time to wash her hair but I had a surprise: The Great Duckling would send the water away from her eyes.

I folded the towel and I put it on her face and I told her to stay calm and look at the ceiling.

It worked!!!!!
I was more than surprised!!!
I washed her hair while she sat in the water, completely calm and relaxed, with her face under the towel.  She asked me about the duckling and I told her it was there, sending the water far from her eyes.
Nothing more than that!!!
Since that day we’ve used The Great Duckling any bath time and she’s never cried or shouted because of water in her eyes.

At the end of the bath, the towel is always soaked and her eyes full of water but she feels good because The Great Duckling was there to send the water away from her eyes, and now she is more calm and cooperative during the bath.
Thanks to The Great Ducking I learnt a lesson about children: I can’t do all the job by myself, I need someone who helps me. It doesn’t matter if it’s a real person or a stitched duckling on a towel. With a little bit of creativity a normal towel is now a good friend who helps us to bring joy and happiness in our home.
One day she will understand that water is not so dangerous and we all will laugh about it!


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