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Experiences Learnings My Journey Toddler (1-2yo)

My Mommy Heart Broke

Last Friday another child intentionally hurt my baby girl for the first time; and a part of my heart just shattered as her face went from confusion to shock to pain and then crumpled as she fell back crying. I get an aching throb in my chest and my throat closes even remembering it and I want to wrap myself around her and never let her go. I started writing this post the evening it happened, but I kept crying. It’s taken me over a week to be able to finish it.

 For long time readers, you will remember my first reaction to finding out we were having a girl. Because of my history of being bullied, I was instantly and to-the-core terrified of seeing my child experience that. Seeing that little girl shove my baby girl was a gut punch.

Essentially what happened was when we arrived, the beautiful little terrorist came rushing to my shy little girl, hugged her, took her hand and off they went to play ball and balloons. My heart swelled with joy, as Charly is usually the friendly kid and the others tend to shy away from her constant sharing (she piles all her toys around other children like offerings of love) and enthusiasm. It was so awesome seeing another child close to her age playing with her and bringing the same warmth to it.

About 40 minutes later, after cake and chatting, Charly wanted to go play with the terrorist again and bounded over and tried to climb up onto the couch alongside the child. At first the other child flapped her hands at Charly, which we all had a bit of a giggle at and told the other child to play nicely. Charly tried again to climb up and the little girl pushed her shoulder slightly, which her aunt reprimanded her for, but I was already starting to get to my feet; and then that horrible child shoved my baby so hard she fell back. Daddy got to her first and swooped her up, but as with any booboo she reached for me sobbing “meemeem” and I grabbed her and took her quickly into the garden til she calmed a little.

I wanted to keep going, to just leave and go home; I figured Brett would follow in time. As it is, we were at a virtual strangers house for their daughter’s birthday party and this child was a relative of theirs. There were a bunch of other more or less strangers that live in our area too with their small children. I was out of my comfort zone, I had a headache and I didn’t really want to be there. I smiled and loved seeing the birthday girl’s face light up when she opened our gift. I am learning to be social in strange situations again, but it is difficult for me still – I am “faking it til I make it”.

So, knowing all of that, I wrapped my arms around my girl and stepped back in; I “calmly” gave Brett our signal and he instantly started doing the “time for Charly’s dinner and bathtime” chatter and I managed to smile and thank them and leave without releasing my hold on Charly who was still clinging to me whimpering.

I know it is important that Charly learns that the world can be a nasty place and that not everyone is nice and, most importantly, how to move past rejection and heartache without it breaking you; but at 14 months old?! Really?

 I worry that I won’t be able to teach her how to do that, since evidently I have never really learned to fully do it myself. Although during my pregnancy I faced a lot of old demons and laid a lot of them to rest; every now and then I will see a person pop up on my Facebook feed through another friend and my blood runs cold and I experience all the hurt and fear and panic that I did when I was a child.

My biggest shame was the overwhelming urge I had to push that other child, all 20 months old of her. Of COURSE I didn’t! I would never ever hurt a child. But my instinct when I saw Charly falling and looking at me desperately was to rush in, shove the little terrorist out of my way and grab my baby and run.

How on earth do you other mommies handle seeing other kids hurt your child? What do you do? What am I meant to do?

11 replies on “My Mommy Heart Broke”

I’m so relieved that your reaction was to also be mean to the bully. I literally had to stop myself shouting at someone else’s kid for doing it to Oden. I was shocked and went into mom mode in overdrive… thankfully my brain kicked in then too! such a horrid thing to experience.

Shame hun! I really feel for you. I was in school with a girl that was really nasty. Luckily I wasn’t really bullied, but that girl always made you feel super uncool. I only started relaxing about it after she committed suicide at the age of 24. Then I also realised that behind every bully, is actually someone probably seeking a lot of attention. Bringing up twins also made it a bit easier for me to handle. They sometimes bully each other! But I learned how to talk sternly to the one who took the toy, or hit the other one, and to make them realise they were wrong and should apologise. It might still take a while for them to fully grasp the concept, as you said, what does a 14/15 month old really understand yet…? Try your best not to always take her away from such a situation. Calm her on the spot, and in front of the bully. Then feel free to sternly tell the bully that what she did was very naughty and she is hurting other babies. Ask the other girl to not do it again, so that you can all play together some more. After that, stay close to Charly and make sure she knows you are closeby in case it happens again. All the best hun. It might be easier said than done, but just take it one step at a time. We must have a play date again soon! Xxx

Thank you my friend. Sheesh, it never occurred to me how tough it would be with twins in that situation. More need for your Supermommy abilities ❤️ Good advice too. Must definitely get together soon! Been too long xx

I also had the same experience about a week ago my bby girl is 2 yrs old now, she looooves playing with other kids because she is an only child and rarely gets to interact. I was also at a friend’s place and a relative of them, alittle girl about the same age, was there. They were playing up and down and was just behind me for a split second. Then I just heard my baby scream. I stopped and turned to look around and this little scoundral BIT her on the arm. I almost DIED. I calmed myself within that split second, turned around and took my bby away from the other child. Then I took the child and gave her a smack on her bottom. There was dead silence in the room at that stage, and I calmy told her that you DONT bite said my goodbyes and left.

So tough! Remember that it isn’t personal. Older kids can be mean to little ones and especially around that age because they can’t always verbalise what they want. I am sure staying calm and removing her like you did, showed her you are the one who protects her. If at the end of it all she comes away with knowing the world is unsafe but mummy is then an important lesson is learnt. Well done for handling it so well. I always follow up but saying whatever happened wasn’t nice to also teach my child that I would want them doing that xx

Thanks so much for the kind words and mommy wisdom Cara. I guess I know logically that there wasn’t real maliciousness behind it; but it still brought up all the feels 🙁

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