Just as I was surprised at how harsh Jordan's behaviors were towards Kayla, it also seemed as if her actions bothered or confused Jordan, herself. One night, out of the blue, she said “I'll try to be nicer to Kayla tomorrow.” Who knows, maybe she was telling me what she assumed I wanted to hear.
Another time she asked me if I knew why Kayla cried so much, when she was mean to her. She was serious. Well, let's see... Maybe it's because she totally adores and looks up to you, and you repeatedly knock her down, while also trying to control her every move. (Of course, I didn't say this aloud).
Grandma Weeze and Grandpa Tony used to sing a made-up lullaby to the kids before they went to bed. Some of the words were “Oh you make me so happy, because you're such a special girl.” When they weren't visiting, she would sometimes ask me to sing it to her. You can imagine how thrown off guard I was, when she said “Mommy, I don't always make you happy.” Ouch. My reply was “No you don't, but I love you and I always will, no matter what you do.”
In retrospect, maybe I should have made a large poster of my reply to her, and hung it on our bedroom wall. There were times when I could have used it as a gentle reminder, during those joyous tween and teenage years. Especially the part that said; 'no matter what you do'.
I realize that even at age four, she was so introspective. After she behaved a certain way, she would question it, talk about it, and wonder why it happened. I was totally confused, because in my mind, she was the one making it all happen. So why didn't she just stop making it happen? It was almost as if a different person was present, once she was able to calm herself down. A person who may have behaved in a somewhat irrational manner, but afterwards, seemed to be able to rationally think about the situation. As she got older, all of this introspection and doubt led her to have strong feelings of guilt and remorse.
I can't tell you how many times throughout the years she cried because she felt badly about her behavior's towards Kayla. And I can't tell you how many times my not-so-proactive answer to her was "Just stop being mean to her."
The thing is, after a while, I basically had nothing else. I had no other suggestions. I just didn't understand.
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