Fleur prefers short sleeves and shorts. In the winter, the challenge has been to keep her warm enough. She probably sees me wear short-sleeves and a coat so she argues to do that as well. Acknowledging it, I do often let her wear short sleeves with a coat plus pants.
The spring adds another complication. It is cold in the morning, so she needs pants then. It warms up in the afternoon, so I send shorts to school she can change into after nap.
One morning, it was border-line. I did allow her to go to daycare in shorts but I sent along pants. I think she thought she was going to have to wear them. In an exasperated tone after taking much complaining, I said, “If… If… IF you want to wear pants because you are cold, you have them in your bag. It is your choice.”
At the end of the day, she didn’t wear them. That’s okay. As long as she made the choice. And didn’t avoid them because I offered.
Human nature wants to feel in control. Lack of control creates stress and anxiety. Letting go of control is hard. Especially when you are three years old.
So we create acceptable choices and let Fleur make them. It seems to make it easier. It reduces the resistance as she gets a say, which is what she mainly wants. The options are acceptable, so we get what we want.
As she obtains more experience, I am sure crafting the options will get harder. She occasionally wants things we are not wanting her to have and redirect to acceptable things. She will get better at coming back to them. Or fighting harder for them.
I think of it like Ego Depletion. When you are 3, you have very little willpower. In fact, I am impressed at the moments where willpower manifests. They very much are easy to observe during well rested mornings after breakfast. Lacking those, the frameworks I deploy make it easier to run through the tasks to get out the door. Less pushback. Less frustration.
Fleur saw the clouds in the sky and declared to me it would rain. I thought she was right.
The taking information of the clouds. The pattern matching for the types of clouds seen against rain vs not rain clouds. When did it rain vs not? Making a hypothesis. And having the confidence to declare it.
She just needs to start recording her hypothesis, data, and results. She will need to learn to write first. And that is in process.
My wife and I completely differ in how we wake. I am more, “oh, I am awake. Let’s get up and do stuff.” She is more, “not yet!”
Fleur mostly takes after her mother in that initial wakefulness. After about half an hour she is more like me. The shift is sudden. One minute she is the world is ending, crying, grouchy, complaining about everything. The next she is fine.
This best of both worlds situation amuses me in hindsight.
She occasionally woke between 4 and 6 am, would come try and sleep with us, but after half an hour just be up. I would get up with her. I try to get her to eat something and go back to sleep.
Ideally she went back to sleep after a little bit. Too often she crashed just before wake up time.
Basically, that means I am up for the rest of the day.
Fleur pretends children hide from their parents on the roof of the dollhouse. The big one up to her chest. The Little People one up to her knee.
Pretty consistently this is a piece of the pretend routine. I definitely need to keep the ladder locked up.
My mother has a story about me a younger age than her climbing the ladder on to the roof while my father wasn’t looking. He went inside for water for just a minute and found me almost up on the roof. He shouted for me, so I got all the way up it.
I wonder if that is something passed down in the epigenetics? Probably.
When women talk about being aggressively protective over their babies, they are telling the truth. Now science has found the chemical emitted by babies that helps mothers be so protective: hexadecanal or HEX.
Humans emit HEX from their skin, saliva, and feces, and it’s among the most abundant molecules babies emit from their heads. When researchers isolated the odorless compound and piped it into mouse cages, it had a relaxing effect on the animals, says Sobel, who studies the role of scent in human interactions.
To test how HEX affects people, Eva Mishor, who earned her Ph.D. in Sobel’s lab, created a series of computer games designed to evoke intense frustration—and a measurable response to it—in 126 human participants. Half of the volunteers wore a HEX-infused adhesive strip on their upper lips while they played, whereas the other half wore strips that smelled identical but were HEX-free. … Sniffing HEX did not calm all the participants down, but had different impacts on men and women, the team reports today in Science Advances. Women exposed to the chemical behaved 19% more aggressively in the noise-blast task, whereas men were 18.5% less aggressive.