Monday, February 6, 2012

Be Silly to Get Unstuck

Like most children who struggle with emotional and behavioral issues brought on by the trauma they were put through early in life, Princess gets STUCK sometimes.  She got stuck A LOT when she first came home to us two years ago, age age 9.  A lot of healing, progress and hard work has taken place since then, but she still gets stuck sometimes.  We are just coming off a really rough patch while we were trying to find the right anxiety medication for her.  There were near daily meltdowns during this period.  Her separation anxiety was epic.  Getting her to school was a real challenge on several occasions. 

One morning I was about to lose it when she was refusing to go to school (again).  She'd been crying/wailing/screaming/kicking her feet toddler style for over an hour past when we should have left for school.  I took a little break and walked away for a minute or two to breathe.  Then I sat next to her, softly stroked her hair and quietly said our mantra to her a few times: "You're safe.  You're loved.  You can handle this."

She screamed louder to cover up my voice.

So I decided to change things up.  I belted it out opera style!  The louder she screamed, the louder I sang.  And the more off key! 
By the third round, she was struggling not to laugh.  By the fifth, she was singing along!  We sang it together all the way to school. 

I've pulled it out a few times since then with the same results.  Try it with anything you want to say. 

"It's time to clean your room." 
"Pee in the toilet not the laundry basket." 
"I'm never going to leave you."

Let me know if it gets your kiddo unstuck!

Here's a video of Princess and I reenacting it.  Ignore the dark, sideways image of dolls.  The audio is what we wanted to present!

1 comment:

  1. This works for us on a daily basis. I used to sing opera, which sometimes has ridiculous lyrics, so the jump to "We've gotta get moo-oo-ving," or "I've got my eye on you," isn't a big one. The zanier, the better. Adding percussion by drumming on anything and everything, or dance, just makes it better--and more likely that my kids will finally lose control and crack a smile. On most days, I can eventually get them to join in. Depending on the song, our husky mix will howl along.


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