So yes, she’s still only twelve and yet just this morning I did a ‘face inspection’ and sent her right back upstairs to wash her face. To her credit, she didn’t stomp up the stairs or roll her eyes at me. She went up willingly and came back down a few minutes later.
In the con column of that interaction, she appeared to be avoiding looking at me fully when she came back down. I asked her to look at me, she did and I saw that while she had washed her face, there were still remnants of makeup beneath her eyes.
She said, “I did the best I could.”
Yes, she probably did. Tonight, I’ll take my moisturizer and a washcloth to her face again. And I’ll do it cheerfully, with no anger or frustration.
Last night she was playing around with her makeup and I asked her, “Are you putting on a bunch now hoping it won’t all wash off when you shower so you will be able to wear what’s left over to school tomorrow.”
She attempted to look innocent, as if such a thing had never occurred to her. Alas, to her dismay, I am on to her.
She’s great about putting her dishes in the sink and rinsing them off. Now, though, we’re working toward, if there is already soapy water in the sink, she needs to actually wash her dish instead of rinsing it and putting it in the adjacent sink. Yeah, it’s a work in progress. But it’s only been two nights she was asked to do this. I’m a bit more patient than her dad about this. I keep reminding him that positive reinforcement will go so much farther than negative. He’s a work in progress too.
I think she feels micromanaged by her dad. I get that. I also think that sometimes, as an almost-teenager and even as a teenager, it’s a parent’s job to micromanage you. But I get why this makes her crazy. I’m working on that one too.
Apparently, we’re all works in progress.