When one of the boys throws a temper tantrum, it's usually because they're tired or hungry or for some other reason that I can usually figure out within a minute or two. But when my six year old girl gets an attitude, I am usually clueless as to the reasoning behind it.
And when I'm unlucky enough to have to deal with a toddler's temper tantrum, at least I know that it will be over in a few minutes and said toddler will be back to his silly, playful self in no time. Not so with the attitude. It can last for hours. Hours, I tell you.
Luckily, I get respite from the dreaded attitude when she goes on her weekend camping trips with Ryan. But then, of course, he has to deal with it. And apparently, Sydney was in fine form this past weekend. She knew she'd crossed a line or two because here is a little recap of the conversation they had on the way home from their trip (secondhand, of course, since I wasn't there):
Sydney: Daddy, I'm sorry about my attitude this weekend.
Ryan: That's OK, but you need to try to be nicer.
Sydney: Are you going to tell Mommy?
Sydney: Because she'll get mad.
Ryan: I don't know. But the attitude needs to stop.
Sydney: I'm good at school, though.
Ryan: That's good.
Sydney: If you want, I can switch. I'll be nice at home and have an attitude at school.
Ryan: No, you need to be nice all of the time.
Sydney: I know. But it's so hard to be good all of the time.
And she's right. It is really hard to be nice all of the time. It's hard for everyone, not just six year olds. And it's really hard to be nice to a six year old who is copping an attitude with you.
I am glad to hear that she's polite at school, though. Her conduct grades are always excellent and her teacher told me that she's never had an issue with talking back so at least I can stop worrying about that.
Hmmm....since she's a stereotypical firstborn who worries about her grades, maybe I should start giving her an attitude report card. Or maybe I'll just keep praying for patience. Either way, I have a feeling we're going to have some pretty tumultuous years ahead of us.