Monday, September 19, 2016

Of Kittens And Being Mean To Mom

The conversation Kiana and I had the other evening included Marshmallows kittens. When the girls found the nest of kittens this past summer, I never dreamed how many times I would use them to explain life lessons to my children.

  Kiana was telling me how she fears I will die so sometimes she is mean to me so she won't get as close to me, thus alleviating the pain of loss when/if it happens.

  "Let's pretend Marshmallow couldn't take care of her kittens so she found them a new home. Do you think she would do that because she loves her babies and wants them to be happy?" I asked.

Kiana agreed, so I asked, "But what if one of those kittens was really worried her new mom would die, so she was mean to her new mom, how could we help that kitten?"

Kiana thought a bit then suggested, "We could find it a new home and a new mom."

"That is a possibility," I agreed, "But what if that new mom wasn't nice to the kitten, or what if she didn't know how to help the kitten work through it's big feelings? Then what?"

"It could go back to it's second mom," Kiana suggested.

"It could, but wouldn't it be a lot easier for everyone if the kitten would work on it's relationship with the mom it has instead of looking for other moms?" I asked. "If the kitten moved from one mom to the next and back again, it would have even more big feelings to work through."

"What would you tell Marshmallows kitten if it was making life very hard for it's new mom?"

I was really hoping she would have a profound thought, one which would unlock the door that was keeping her bound by fear but she couldn't come up with anything.

"What would you tell that kitten?" She asked me with a sheepish grin. 

 "I would tell it that Marshmallow, it's mom, thought she had found  a good home for her baby. I would tell that kitten that Marshmallow would want it to love it's new mom and that it would make her sad to hear that her kitten was having so many struggles."

Kiana got teary eyed over that. I always struggle to know how far to push my children and while I don't want to toy with their emotions, if that will help, I will try it!

"I think I know a little girl who is a lot like that kitten," I said quietly.

Kiana nodded, "I should just be nice to you, but it is so hard!!" She cried.

We went on talk about ways to work through her big feelings then I suggested that we color some pictures together, something she loves to do. I paged through the coloring book and found the perfect picture of a kitten. I colored it, tore it out of the book and wrote a message on it. A message reminding Kiana to love her mom and that I love her.

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