Kimani doesn’t like having her hair washed, or combed, or brushed, or petted, or styled with ponytails and the like. And her hair doesn’t like staying clean and tangle-free. So, every single morning is a fussing match. She cries. She pulls her head away from me. She pushes my hands away. She scratches me. She cries. She cries. She cries. I want to cry too.
Every so often I get really impatient and sick of it and I think, "This is it, I am cutting it off!" But I never do... because I remember all those girls in the orphanage with their short little bowl haircuts. I know that if I cut Kimani’s hair it would be more about me than her, so it stays.
This weekend I was on my own with my four youngest kids and I was worn thin (my tolerance not my waist unfortunately). I started to work on Kimani’s rat nest and she started her objections. This morning her hair was really messy because I had not taken the time to brush it out before bed the night before. The job was so daunting that I started to think about the scissors again.
Then all of the sudden an idea popped into my head. I ran to get her iPad and propped it up in front of her. Then I searched youtube for her favorite song, Kidz Bop doing Call Me Maybe.
She is enthralled with that song. After five times listening to it, she had a lovely set of ponytails and I kept my sanity (ok, having "I missed you so bad" stuck in my head all day might have made me a little crazy but it was worth it.)
Look at how happy she was even during the 6th and 7th rounds of it.
And then I realized she was singing along, or at least trying to. Here she is trying to sing, "bad".
After I put the iPad away, I noticed that Kimani was very verbal. She initiated a two word request over and over, "Want cookie." After a few cookies, I told her that we were all done with that, and instead of pitching a screaming fit, she went to get her PECs book and began looking through it. I knew she was looking for the cookie picture so I put it on the Velcro part of the book. She took it and put it on her request strip and gave it to me and said, "Want cookie."
I was really amazed. This is a big deal for her. She has never been that verbal and directed in her communication. So of course we are going to be doing a lot of experimenting with Call Me Maybe followed by mama’s homemade speech therapy.
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