For the most part, Sarah is pretty brave and fearless. She climbs up all kinds of play structures without batting an eye, and she didn't so much as whimper when the doctor cleaned her head wound and glued it closed. However, she is bothered by loud noises (the blender, the mixer, the hair dryer). And the thing that bothers her the most is the vacuum. She HATES the vacuum.
Unfortunately, though, vacuuming is a fact of life; you can only neglect it for so long. And today was vacuuming day. I warned Sarah that I would be vacuuming. She immediately covered her ears and bolted for her bedroom. This tactic worked great...until I was ready to vacuum in there. As soon as I entered her room with the vacuum, Sarah started screaming and crying hysterically. She was so distraught that Nelson could hear her all the way in the living room, even over the noise from the vacuum! I didn't make any attempt to vacuum the corner where Sarah was cowering in terror; I basically just did the "middles" in her room.
I finally finished the dreaded deed, and Sarah tearfully asked if I was done and if I had put the vacuum away. I told her I was indeed finished, and I sat and cuddled with her for a moment. I reminded her that the vacuum wouldn't hurt her. "It did a time or two ago," she responded.
"It did what?" I asked.
"It hurt my feelings," she replied.
"How did it do that?" I questioned.
"It doesn't when it's put away," she insisted.
"Does it scare you?" I probed further.
"The big one does," she confirmed. "The little one is okay!"
"So do you want me to use the little one?" I wanted to know.
"No, you've already used the big one!" she immediately protested, obviously not wanting to take the chance that I might continue the vacuum torture.
Sigh. So now I am left with two choices...leave the house in dusty, unvacuumed shambles, or send my daughter into terrified conniption fits. Neither option works that well for me, if you want to know the truth!