Friday, February 7, 2014

{Miss Maylin} Bath Time Battle

Not sure when the mama-daughter battle for control begins for most people, but I already feel that Maylin and I have commenced this epic struggle. 

I have so many examples of stand-offs based on our mutual stubbornness, which {unfortunately?} is a strong trait in all of the females on my side of the family. Maylin comes from a long line of stubborn, so why should I be so surprised when we push at each other in silent, unbendable battles of will? I suppose I just expected that not to start until she turned 13. Again, another first time mom mis-assumption. That's okay. I'm sure there'll be plenty.

One of the longest lasting power struggles we have going between the two of is bath time. Oh, how we both hate that word. 

Maylin looooved baths until she was about 8 months old. She'd splash, and play with her bath toys, and laugh, and pretty much just hang out until the already tepid water turned cold. It was one of her favorite ways to pass the time. I have to admit that on more than one occasion when she was fussy I plopped her into a tub full of water, which immediately washed away the fuss and left her with a squeaky clean attitude.

Then, she started getting mad at me when I interrupted her water play to actually bathe her. Oh, she loved playing in the water, but the moment the Aveeno baby shampooed rag even slightly touched her head, back, belly, foot, or any other part of her body, she'd wail. Not just upset, pouty lip cry. I'm talking a flat out screaming wail. Then she'd pitch herself forward so that I was afraid her face would submerge itself in the inch of water in the tub and she'd drown from gulping water into her lungs to get herself ready for the next scream. 

This escalated so that every time her big toe touched the water in the tub she started protesting with the infamous Maylin-wail-and-flail. She didn't even want to play in the water anymore. Water became evil.

Thus, the battle of wills commenced.

I tried sponge bathing her. Wail-and-flail like she was being flogged rather than bathed.

I tried bathing her in the bathroom sink. Wail-and-flail.

I tried bathing her in the kitchen sink. Wail-and-flail.

I began to dread bath time. And, terrible mother than I may be, I started pushing her baths to every other day, or even every three days, or just when her hair looked like a greasy mop stuck to her head. Or, okay, pushing it back to bathing Saturday night before church the next morning. Shameful I know. Don't judge.

No matter what combination of tricks I tried, nothing worked. Sister didn't even want to play with her bath toys outside the tub anymore. I was about to resign myself to mothering a stinky baby for the next few years. It was that bad. 

Then, lo and behold, I somehow fell upon the right combination of bath time antics that actually kept the wail-and-flail at bay.

Kitchen sink. Don't put the soap on the rag. Instead, make a bubble bath. Then, gently, ever so slightly, bathe the baby with the soapy water while she's eyeing the sprayer and dish soap on the edge of the sink. Leave the hair for last and be prepared to snatch her up with a hooded towel the minute the soap's out of her hair. Mom wins.

For now, Maylin is back to semi-enjoying very short baths. I even caught her on camera with a smile on her face. 

Mom 1. Baby 0. {Not that I'm keeping score or anything}

I love Maylin to my core. Even her stubbornness. Even her strong attitude. But I can tell there will be times when Daddy will step in to smooth things out between us. Hopefully I will be adult enough, and parent enough, to keep these times to a minimum. 

Speaking of, Maylin's up from her nap now so I'm off to play. Happy weekend!

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