I was a very independent child who could always walk into a room full of strangers and just start talking away about whatever was going on in my head at the time. It got me in trouble on more than one occasion.
My little Miss E on the other hand is very different to that. She is clingy and sensitive and doesn't like disruption to her routine. She gets very attached to her carers at childcare and if a new person comes in she freaks out.
Last weekend we went to a birthday party. It was only the second one we've been too since I lost my mothers group when we moved to Albury. The party was for the three year old child of a friend of mine so when we arrived there were about 30 kids running around in the play centre. Miss E totally lost it. She clung to me like glue, arms and legs wrapped tightly around me and any attempt at putting her down resounded with "no, no, no!"
Luckily we were late and they were up to cutting the cake so while all the kids went into the food room to sing happy birthday, Miss E and I had the bouncy castle all to ourselves. At first she just stood on it looking scared while I made a complete fool of myself leaning onto it (because the age limit is 8) and saying "Oooohhh, aaaahhhh, c'mon jump!" and holding her hands attempting to get her to jump. After a couple of minutes she moved, then tried to jump, then giggled, jumped again and before you knew it she was having a great time.
The other kids came out of the food room one by one after about half an hour so by then we had moved to the slippery slide and she was pretty calm. About 10 minutes before the party ended Miss E decided it was safe to play with the other kids.
I know now that I should get to a party early so Miss E has time to gradually get used to the kids arriving and is not overwhelmed by huge crowds. I also know I may have to ease her into playing with others and be aware when things might change to help her adjust.
Parenting is definitely challenging. I have very little patience and Miss E challenges that every day. Maybe that's why we were put together. She teaches me to be patient and I teach her confidence.
By the way Mrs Woog from Woogsworld is up for a Bloggie. I think she's awesome and if you agree you should definitely vote for her at http://2012.bloggi.es/