Leah Remini on Grrrrrrrr Morning ...
So, I had a friend and her son, who is my daughter Sofia's age, sleep over one night. The next morning I was walking down the stairs, in hopes of grabbing a cup of coffee before my daughter woke up, when I heard this shocking sound coming from my kitchen. It stopped me dead in my tracks.
With my heart pounding, unable to recognize these sounds in my house in the morning, I slowly approached my kitchen. As I entered the kitchen, what I saw shocked me. It was my friend and her 4-year-old son sitting at my kitchen table ... um ... now, prepare yourself for this people: They were sitting at my kitchen table eating and laughing! Eating and laughing?! The child! Happy?!? With no TV ... eating on his own!?! Apparently, he was hungry and needed food. He wanted food and he wanted to just sit there and laugh—WITH HIS MOTHER!
I approached my friend and her "happy child" with caution and I said, all in one breath, "What the heck is he doing? What's wrong with him? Did he eat some sugar or something? Why is he he so happy?" She laughed and said, "No, that's just the way he is in the morning." Personally, I thought her "comeback" was very nasty. :)
Now, my daughter likes what she likes. We don't let her watch a lot of TV, but she does eat while she is watching her favorite shows. But watching another mother do it her way makes you wonder if, once again, you are doing it wrong. You see, Sofia wakes up grumpy (just like her mommy) and just wants to be left alone with her TV. And it does take some prodding to get her to eat in the morning—usually a good ol' threat like, "Sofia, you have to eat if you are going to watch TV."
So, the next day, being a mom who is willing to learn new things, I said to Sofia, "Come on baby, let's eat breakfast and talk, just you and me." I made her breakfast and she sat there looking at me while I tried to ask her stupid questions like, "What did you do yesterday?" After about a minute of this, I wondered, "Why I am doing this?" I needed my coffee and I needed to start cleaning the dang kitchen! So, I turned on her little kitchen TV and went about my business, happily fulfilling her every need: "Mommy, please get me my cereal," "Mommy, I need 'coldy aquas,'" "Mommy, I need orange juice in my Ariel cup."
This is our routine. It may not be right for my perfect friend's perfect kid, but it works for us!
It's not that I didn't know what to say or how to do it without the TV, it's just that I realized we all have our routines. And for me, even though I wanted my daughter to sit in our kitchen and tell me stories and eat a bagel with cream cheese and scrambled eggs with too much salt, that is not who we are and, more importantly, not who she is. And you know what? Why would I want it any other way?
Thanks to Leah Remini.