I care for kids and I bring to the table warm hugs, firm boundaries and lots of laughter and creativity. Little ones never cease to amaze me and are usually far cleverer than we give them credit for i.e. they have worked their care givers out fairly quickly, with what they can get away with…
For example, the 4 year old boy I look after refuses to have his hair washed. The first time I went to do it I had NO idea the commotion he would carry on. He screamed the house down. I half expected the next door neighbour to bang on the front door asking if everything was ok?
Yeah, no murder is being committed, only hair washing!
There are some nights I leave and I know he doesn’t have his bath after because when I arrive the next morning he’s still in the same clothes. I casually asked ‘so, does mum make you have a bath or does she let you get your own way’ …. he smiled coyly and said ‘I get my own way.’ hmmm. I thought as much.
I asked his mum about it and like many mums before her there are times she can’t ‘handle the stress’ and hair washing is one of those things that get put in the too hard basket.
Enjoying a challenge I set about over the next couple of months to make it a goal to have him be okay with not only having a evening bath but also to have his hair washed without all this commotion.
I decided to wash his sisters hair in front of him. He stood watching my every move casually observing “I didn’t know it was going to be that quick”. I smiled. ‘Let me know when your ready for me to wash your hair’.
Imagine my surprise when a couple of weeks later, he hopped in the bath and said ‘pass me the face washer’ promptly covering it over his face ‘I’m ready’ … I didn’t waste one second and had that shampoo in my hot little hand before he could change his mind.
Now he shoves his head under everyone who comes to visit and says ‘smell my beautiful hair’ ..