Monday, July 17, 2006

Not making a "seen"

My husband and I routinely stop what we're doing and ask our daughter, "Have I told you lately what a great kid you are?" Well, I'm feeling really blessed right now. On Saturday, we went swimming in a friend's pool before we all went out to eat together. While swimming, she was so proud of the way she was riding on Daddy's back and going under the water with her eyes open. Well, when she got in the hot van to ride to dinner, apparently sweat must have gotten in her eyes that were already probably sensitive from swimming. She kept rubbing them, in spite of my pleas to blink or close her eyes for a while. Although our friend's pool is salt water instead of chlorinated, she was reacting as if her eyes were chemically burned. Oh, I remember burning my eyes in a motel pool as a child. I could hardly open them. Well Faith was reacting the same way, and the height of the discomfort hit right in the middle of dinner. She started crying as if she were having a tantrum. People started cutting their eyes wondering why this child was sobbing at the dinner table. I was hoping they could hear her proclaiming, "I can't see. I can't see. I want to go home." I knew there wasn't much I could do for her, but I tried to reassure her and get her to close her eyes and just relax, but she wouldn't hear of it. Of course, I also wanted to stand on my chair and make an announcement that I wasn't beating my child, she isn't spoiled and there is no need to call DFACS. I dampened a napkin with ice water and wiped her eyes and that gave her some relief. She then sat in the booth holding the wet napkin as a cold compress over her eyes. The relief lasted long enough for us to finish eating. Since then, I've been trying to remember a time when she did pitch a public fit. My memory escapes me. Sure, we had to leave a lunch date once when she was 2, and I vaguely remember struggling to get through the grocery store. But I honestly can't think of any time she threw a tantrum that embarrassed me. Wow, let me go tell her what a great kid she is.
- Liz Fabian

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