“Wanna take a break”

This morning, I was enjoying a hot cup of Hong Kong milk tea that I’d made for Chris and me when Kaia came up to me and kept peering into my steaming cup. Usually, she knows when I am drinking tea and says, “mummy tea,” but this time, she said, “Want some? Want some tea?” I’m trying to keep her away from caffeine for as long as possible, so I told her that this was mummy’s tea and that Kaia couldn’t have any. She proceeded to have a bit of a tantrum and yelled that she still wanted some, but I told her that instead, she could have water or milk (this didn’t go over very well). She continued her tantrum but then suddenly quieted down and stopped. She then went to the corner of the room, laid down on the floor with her butt sticking up high in the sky, and said, “Wanna take a break. Take a break.” She laid there quietly for some time, and we just observed her and quietly chuckled.

I’m guessing, based on how I’ve seen her teacher at school interact with the kids, that this is how her teacher helps the kids regulate their emotions. She manages their tantrums and “big feelings” with suggesting to “take a break” from the world and just be one with one’s feelings, quietly moving away from everyone and being by oneself. Kaia’s already done this a number of times just this Saturday, and it actually seems to be self-calming. After she gets up from her face-down position on the floor, wherever she is, she seems to go back to her usual happy self.

Well, I can get behind this. Regulating emotions is a huge part of toddlerhood, so if this helps her navigate her big feelings, then I am all for it (and also, all for less tantrums, especially screaming high pitched ones!).

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