Yesterday over lunch, I was busy on my phone so I didn’t notice right away that Kyle had been lying face down on the couch for quite a while. Every time yaya would ask him to come and eat, he would answer with a protesting grunt and stay face down, hugging his furry dinosaur.
“What’s wrong Kyle, what happened?”
I could hear him crying, so I decided to distract him for a bit. I find that it works for us, and puts him in a better mood to talk about what happened after.
“Kyle, do you want to get some toys from the attic? Do you want to hear a funny story? May I order 1 hug, please?”
When none of that worked, I asked if he wanted to be left alone. He said no, so I thought of reading him the next book I’m working on- Feeling All My Anger:
“Look for a hug, just hug someone- your mommy or your daddy
Your favorite toy, your favorite blankie- or maybe hug your nanny!
Imagine that the hug’s so strong, it drowns out all the flames
A hug that’s from someone you love, accepts and never blames..”
He kept grunting after every line, but I could feel him calming down. I carried him in my arms and hugged him tight as I read those lines. Almost there, but not quite.
“Kyle, what’s that game you were asking me about that you wanted me to check? Should we google it together?”
“Sega Genesis,” he nodded his head in reply, while wiping the tears from his eyes.
We searched for it on my phone and he started talking normally again.
“What happened, Kyle, why were you upset?”
“I don’t know, mom, I don’t remember.”
“Alright. Should we eat now?”
After a few minutes:
“Mom, I want to tell you something but I’m scared.”
“You never have to be scared of me, Kyle. You can tell me anything. I don’t ever want you to be scared of me.”
“Okay, let me tell you through a book.”
I followed him to his book cabinet and he showed me the back of his favorite book right now- Diary of a Wimpy Kid. It said:
“Oohhhh I understand. It’s not nice to always be bossed around, huh? You didn’t want to yet, but we kept nagging you to eat?”
He smiled and nodded his head in reply.
“You know what, Kyle? Mommy, Daddy, and Yaya were also kids once. So we know how it feels. And I find it so cool that you told me what you feel using a book!”
“Yeah, me too!”
“But you know what? It’s also a lot of fun being a kid. Last Christmas did mommy and daddy get any toys? None! And how many toys did you get? Sooo many!”
“Well… you got some toys when YOU were a kid.”
“Yeah that’s why it’s so cool to be a kid. Do you want to show dad what you showed me?”
He ran to his dad and showed the back of the book, underlining the same line with his fingers.
His dad took a serious tone and started enumerating how lucky Kyle is, counting his fingers for emphasis: “You have food, you have your own room, you have toys and video games- not all kids have those.”
Kyle copied him and started enumerating his rebuttals while counting with his fingers: “Well, other kids have food also, and a room, and toys..”
“No, most kids don’t have those, especially here in the Philippines.”
Kyle in a smart aleck voice: “I’m talking about the Kids in America!”
“No, a lot of kids in America also don’t have those.”
“Well.. I’m talking about the billionaires.”
To which we all laughed and proceeded to enjoy our lunch.
Later that day:
“Mom, I’m adding this to my worst days list.”
“Huh? Why?? I thought we were having so much fun today after you calmed down.”
“Well, I guess it’s okay. So it’s an okay day.”
“Alright, okay is good!”
Wishing for more okay days for everyone!😄