Last week was a bit crazy. After we already had weather over 0° Celsius and two afternoons we could actually play outside in the yard winter came back. Without snow at first (weekend changed that). Just freezing cold weather. So we had to stay inside again. But after we had these few hours of afternoons outside where both girls were busy playing with their training bikes, it was hard for both to stay inside again. H. kept on asking if we could please go outside and play, not understanding that this wet but very cold weather is just not something her little sister can take for more than 30 Minutes when wearing that big fat snowsuit before she gets bored due to limited mobility .
This restriction to inside play is pretty hard on my big girl. She wants to get out and get busy, run and play and explore nature.
Inside play also puts constant tensions on the sisters. They fight about which toy belongs to whom – with the older one arguing “I had it first!” (which apparently rules out possession and is accomplished by pure holding/taking/crasping it from where or who ever had it at that moment)A, of course, not having a glue on what “mine” and “yours” means and just wanting to have everything that the big sister has as well.
The whole thing hit it’s high point last week with one of the finest temper tantrums performed by H. so far: that morning I was out shopping and bought four tiny buckets to use as flower pots for little daffodils as spring decoration. When I brought the girls home these buckets were still standing in the hall and the girls found them. They kept carrying them around putting toys inside until, at some point, H decided she wanted to have the same amount of buckets as her sister. Up until then each girl had two buckets. Which seemed pretty even to me. Well, I learned that afternoon that four buckets decided by two doesn’t necessarily mean 2/2 is even. I tried explaining and showing H that A has two buckets as well, just as she does. But she was so set on being treated unfair and that she should have 3 (maybe even four) buckets that explaining didn’t work. Infect, I realized that any explanation of “even” made it only worse. So I quickly collected all 4 buckets (A was long gone and already found a new toy to play with) and but them well out of sight for both girls. But the tantrums was already in full blast and kept her busy for another 15 Minutes. At some point I left the room as she wouldn’t let me comfort her and my presence seemed to make it worse, reminding her of her unfair treatment. She also moved and went in front of the mirror (at which point the whole thing made me smile again as it was just – sorry my dear daughter – so funny to watch…) to wallow in self-pity.
Mostly, I find these tantrums difficult as they seem to go on forever and can be triggered by almost anything and they begin and as they appear: Suddenly.
Leaving me wondering if this was it? How in the world can she get over it just like that when it bothered her for the last 20 Minutes and was totally unnecessary to begin with. In this case, she was never treated unfair… In other cases she doesn’t seem to get that rules apply to her as well. We had a couple of instances where she wouldn’t want A to play with toys that explicitly belong to H but than just comes up to A taking toys away, ripping them right out of her hand, that explicitly belong to A. Of course, when told not to take A’s toys away she tells us “But I had it first!” (now, did you?!) which rules out any possession. Back to square one.
Three years old sometimes does seem hard to be.