This morning Matilda had her 4yr old immunisations. It is never fun for the kids or for the adults. I particularly hate it when they get older as they look at you with these eyes saying "Why are you letting them hurt me like this?" I must say I am often feeling "Why am I letting them hurt you like this!"
As with everything else, we are very honest with the kids about what's happening. A week or two ago I told Tilly about the appointment and she wasn't too fussed. Once it was upon us, she seemed a little excited, and I was thinking "Gee have I explained this properly?"
We went in and the nurse asked her if she knew what we were doing and Tilly confidently said "Yes, your going to put needles in my arms and it will hurt but go away quickly."
Everyone was set to go...
I have noticed with Matilda that she often selects just how much emotion she want to share. She will either be out there with it or she will hold it in. This is quite a contrast from her big brother who wears his emotion on his sleeve. There is never any doubt as to how Orlando is feeling, it's written all over his face, and bellowing into our ear drums.
I know that when Tilly and I butt heads over something, she gives me this look like "you can't break me... I am actually finding this quite amusing" Where as if she is squabbling with Orlando she will dramatically cry until she has received what she deems to be enough attention from it.
Today, when it really did hurt she held her breath, clenched her teeth and didn't show a tear. In between sides she hid her face in my chest and did it all again. Not a sound, not a tear.
We waited our mandatory 15 mins in the waiting room in which she was quiet, stiff and close to motionless in her chair. When it was time, we hopped into the car and I took off the band-aids. This was the straw that broke the camels back... the sobs flowed, the crying, the "OUCH it Hurt!" the deep need for Mumma and snuggles. She had held it all in, until the privacy of our car.
When I relayed this message to Nath, he said "Just like her mum" and it got me thinking...
Where have Tilly and I got the perception that we need to be strong, stoic, stubborn and not show others how deeply we are feeling? Why do we both wait for the safety of our loved ones to show the true depth of our pain/anger/happiness? Where did we learn about this mask?
I love that children teach us so much about ourselves, but I am also very aware about how much of ourselves we teach our children...