You live in this world, and the world does not revolve around you.
“I do everything mommy tells me not to do because I’m two” was the theme song I used to sing to my two- year-old a lot. Exhibiting the typical behavior of a two-year-old in testing the boundaries only a little and never giving me a really hard time. She was the perfect child. Then she turned 3, or as I like to call it, a threenager.
Sassy, hard headed, tantrums, jokester, and manipulative though as sweet as can be. Her current thing is sneaking. She is a spitting of image of me, except for the jokes, that she gets from her dad. Or at least how I was when I was her age. Oh Lord. It’s like seeing a little miniature version of yourself but being aware of all the tricks because you played them yourself. She is also very strong and opinionated which I love about her. Something she’s definitely going to need to get her ahead in life as a woman.
This leaves me juggling her independent nature which I want to preserve with a need to discipline so that she does not walk all over people and instead treats them with respect. She likes to say, “go, ‘Ow'” and then laugh when I do. She’s so cute about it I’m not sure if I should be concerned that I’m raising a bully and not know it. It’s the delicate line of where freedom and discipline meet.
“You live in this world and the world does not revolve around you,” is a phrase I say to her a lot. It’s a way to show her that though she is the center of my life, she is not the center of everyone else’s. It’s a way to show that she matters, that she is a part of a very large picture, but she is not the only part of the picture. And I think this an important lesson for her to learn. I believe it will make things easier for her when she looks at her actions as having a chain reaction that affects others, that she is part of something bigger than herself.
“You live in this world, and world does not revolve around you,” works for so many occassions. If she gets mad because I do not let her use my phone to look at her YouTube Videos, I say, “You live in this world and the world does not revolve around you. You do not need to watch those videos right now. And will not get upset because I did not let you use the phone. You do not need to use the phone. You want to use the phone, but that is different.” That tends to be enough until a few minutes later when she tries to sneak it. She’s only 3.
She’s going to do what comes instinct to her to get what she wants. In which case, I take the phone away and repeat the same message reminding her why she should not sneak. Being an avid sneaker myself at her age and even older, I know she’s going to do it anyways, just like I did.
But I’m not going to let her know that I know that.