The day after Tortuga's celebration he woke up completely dysregulated. He went into the bathroom to do his morning routine and got upset because I gave him a new bar of soap instead of body wash. (He has always used soap.) He started screaming that he hated me and that I never give him what he needs. He went on and on about how he was going to hurt me and how miserable I made life for him. That was the beginning of a pretty terrible day. There was no way to diffuse or redirect him. By dinnertime I was exhausted and had sent him to bed.
On the plus side, he didn't lose it the day before. I also knew enough to expect that there would be payback for so many reasons--celebration, fun, friends, sugar, being the center of attention, new toys, feeling so incredibly loved. The range of feelings he must have experienced are far beyond anything I can imagine. On the plus side, he didn't rage or meltdown. Yes, he was vicious, rude, mean, disrespectful, and all of those are intolerable and hell to deal with but he didn't rage or meltdown. I am hanging on to that. On the negative side, it made for a horrible beginning to our week and this threw everyone off.
Corazon handles other kids getting attention pretty well now when we have parties, etc. Including her in the planning and preparation certainly kept her attention-seeking behaviors to a minimum. BUT, once it passes, she starts to act out too and ACT. OUT. she did. So there I was dealing with both of them needing constant attention and pulling out all the stops to get it in negative ways.
In addition, Corazon has been struggling with some of her "normal" kid privileges. We have always had issues with her sneaking and lying. Mostly now they are in the more normal range. When she does sneak it is usually something innocuous like reading. However, she behaves as though it is one of the worst things in the world if she gets away with it. I had noticed that she was "sneaking" reading when she was supposed to be doing other things (putting away her clothes, getting dressed, doing schoolwork, cleaning her room, etc.) We only recently let her have a bookshelf and books in her room and this is causing her some angst. The more she gets away with sneaking reading the worse she behaves. I have told her that she is going to have to figure that one out. I am NOT going to take the books and shelf away and she is going to have to figure out how she manages that responsibility because she is READY. It is hard for me to stick to this but just like she has needed practice with other things she needs practice with this. So we do this dance. She sneaks and wants to be punished in some way. I refuse to "catch" her at it and give her consequences. She gets frustrated and anxious BUT she does stop herself for a few days. I know it seems torturous for all of us but this child desperately needs to know that she can STOP herself from doing things that aren't in her best interest and that I won't always be there to catch her. Of course, I am cheating because I can do this about sneaking books whereas I don't think I could do this about a whole host of other things. Anyway, the good news is that she is able to go longer and longer without sneaking reading and I am hoping this transfers to other things. However, the process, is so NOT fun!