Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Adventures In Babysitting

Yesterday I babysat for Libby, a friend's little girl, while her mom visited the dentist. I was not prepared for this. I thought I was, they see each other often and Nolan's been to Libby's house but Libby hasn't been here. Playing with Nolan's toys. Nope. And that boy needs to learn how to share.

It went like this... mom dropped Libby off. Libby had a toy with her. Nolan grabbed it from her. Libby grabbed it back. Nolan cried. We go to the room with all of Nolan's toys. Libby plays with anything and Nolan wants to play with it. It was like he was wondering who this person was touching all of HIS stuff! He was totally possessive and they both were grabbing things out of each others hands. After 5 minutes in the play room Libby starts screaming which startles Nolan and Nolan starts screaming. So they are both sitting in my lap screaming and I'm thinking -oh Sh*t. This is only 10 minutes in! What was I thinking? I can't do this!
So then I think... we have two push toys- a truck and a train! How about I try to get them to play with that? Then Libby sits on the truck. I foolishly think 'how cute would it be for Nolan to push Libby sitting on the truck?' What a fool. I ended up confiscating the push toys and spent the rest of the 75 minutes feeding Libby and trying to keep Nolan and Libby from seeing what the other one is playing with.

But after abut 40 minutes they played closely and calmly. Not together, they are still too young for that. At one point Nolan offered to Libby one of the things he aggressively chews on. I mentioned to Nolan I didn't think he wanted to give it to Libby but he offered it and she took it. Nolan quickly regretted that- thank goodness Mom knew and had an alternative to offer Libby after I took the fuzzy duck puzzle piece from Libby for Nolan to continue chewing.

All in all it was fine after a rocky start and real fun to see them play. I thought of that show 'it's me or the dog' when Nolan started showing possessive behavior. Libby was coming in on Nolan's turf and touching all of Nolan's things. I understood where Nolan was coming from. This was HIS play area, these were HIS toys. And poor Libby must have been so scared with all of the strange toys and smells in a new area, she was just trying to play and Nolan kept pulling things out of her hands. On the show, 'It's me or the dog' the trainer would have suggested we meet in a neutral area and both bring toys for them both to play with, let them sniff each other and calm down. I know kids aren't dogs but they still have primitive behavior.

1 comment:

  1. I loved your story. I have lived that same experience. Interesting how children so young develop territorial instincts. Luckily they don't mark their territory like dogs do. You made me laugh and I needed that today. Cheers.