My only way to help her was to be firm but kind, giving lots of hugs and reassuring words. That worked not really at all. So I nursed her. She settled down quickly and then passed out.
And now, as I write, she sleeps in a sniffly slumber.
What caused these big overwhelming feelings of offense? Little L is not yet able to vocalize and pinpoint her specific woes just yet, but her constant repeating of "I can't eat! Not good for little girls" gives me a clue.
When she woke up today and brushed her teeth, I told her she could only use/eat one kind of fluoride toothpaste, because too much fluoride might make her sick.
When we got to Sunday School, she was immediately reminded that she wasn't allowed to eat the play dough.
As she played, she saw a very authentic-looking toy sandwich on the table. When she attempted to take a bite, I had to tell her that she couldn't eat it because it was a pretend sandwich, not a real one.
During snack time, Little L accidentally reached into the wrong snack bowl and grabbed a fish cracker. She was quickly reminded not to eat from the blue bowl that belonged to the other kid, but to stick with the contents of her pink bowl.
Sense a theme yet?
Poor girl. I will have to try positive statements going forward, since hearing "no" so many times probably made her feel awful. I am not in the business of making kids feel like crap just to teach them a lesson, so I will have to try finding new ways to enforce boundaries on her eating without saying, "You can't eat that! It's not good for little girls."
Yup, Mommy is having a big feelings day, too.