08 June 2011

what do you think i should do...

it's been one week, and esmé still won't travel in the car without covering her head with a scarf or a towel. it's actually kind of funny when she pretends she sees a volkswagen from under there, yelling "pink one!" and then punching whoever's lucky enough to be next to her.

she's also taken to sleeping upside down in bed. head deep under the covers, feet on her pillow.




whenever we get in the car, she cries and says she doesn't want to get in another accident. i tell her that i've only been in one accident. ever. and that people really only get to be in one accident. so she got hers out of the way early. i'm hoping she never meets someone who's been in two.

we talk about everything so much, but i'm feeling uncertain about what to do here. i don't want to overthink it, but i certainly don't want to blow it off, either.

thoughts? i appreciate yours. xoxo. little bunny in da hood found here.Link

11 comments:

becca b said...

My 2 yr old & I got in a car accident 3 months ago where we flipped the car (no one was hurt), but he had nightmares about it for a few days afterwards. During the day he would talk about it and flip the car that he was playing with upside down at LEAST once a day, but we'd tell him over and over we're never going to flip the car again--ever. My dad (who's a shrink) said to draw the whole event out in a picture book and read it to him when he brought it up so he could work it out in his mind. I think it's a really good idea because it's processing at their level. Glad you're ok, and in not very long she will be too.

Leslie *Fresh Out of Lemons* said...

Hmmm, this is a tough one. I think that kids have their own way of working things out. My instinct would probably be the same as your's; just continue to reassure her and allow her to process the shake-up at her own pace. I'm super-susceptible to post-traumatic stress, so I can't imagine being as young as Esme and dealing with those strange and panicky feelings. But like Becca said (and the book idea is really smart), she'll be ok. :)

Beth Janairo said...

I love the idea of making a book about the memory... puts it into a more controllable space...

But I would suggest you trust your instincts. Why not explain the concept of post-traumatic stress? Tell her that her body/mind will be trying to deal with the accident in a special way, and whatever works for her works. I'm impressed that she even goes in the car at all! That's huge. If she starts to balk, you could explain that you would rather not drive much either, but to conquer that accident, it's something you both have to do....

Just some thoughts. I say trust your instincts. You both will have weird reactions...if you can accept the mystery of that, it may be easier to work through it?

thinking of you and praying for you every day...
b

Ana Degenaar said...

Maybe it would help if the whole family gets in the car just to drive around the neighborhood and assure her everything is ok.

Heather Innusa said...

I like the bunny in da hood ;). Seems appropriate.

I think it's just take time. Luckily I haven't been in your shoes here (my only accident, I didn't have the kids in the car - but Me, I'm still shaken from it - a year later). But I can imagine it's pretty tramatic for a little {one}. I'm praying for peace for little esme!

Simply Mel {Reverie} said...

You heal with your stories, your words. It's what esme knows...these comforting strings of beauty which flow from your heart. Time, you, her ~ talking, listening. Healing and comforting every step of the way.

Kate Coveny Hood said...

I'm a terrible lurker and never comment here...but I was so happy to read that neither of you was seriously injured in that accident.

The emotional fall out on the other had...

Honestly - I think you've done everything right so far. Children want reassurance. They want to be told that there are no such things as ghosts and that you'll never let anything bad ever happen to them. They need that right now so they can focus on all of the growing and learning they have to do without letting unnecessary anxiety get in the way. And saying that people are only ever in one car accident in a lifetime is *generally* true anyway.

She just needs time. She'll be in and out of cars on a daily basis for the rest of her life, so that will speed along the process. For now she just has to work through it.

In the meantime, you can always give her something to hug when she feels nervous - maybe a good luck charm as well.

Poor little thing. What a scary experience for her. For both of you!

Kristin said...

I won't even pretend that I have a good solution for you, but I do agree that the other commentor's have got a lot of nice ideas -- the book, a good luck charm, talking it out.

Praying for you and Esme as you work through this.
xoxo, K

Callie Grayson said...

Wish I had some wise words for you.
You are in my thoughts though
Xx callie

Anonymous said...

Glad that you're both ok! it is a traumatising experience, and yes - drawing it out and talking about it a lot will make it real (because it is) and will make it go away slowly! I cannot imagine it, and I wish you well and well and better! lots of hugs and kisses and to all of you.
Audrey

saltandpine said...

I'm usually a lurker but hadn't checked in for awhile (I just read your latest post yesterday but I didn't go back & read past posts I missed. I didnt realize you were in a car accident! So sorry & so glad you are okay!) Sounds like you are doing a great job reassuring Esme and by just letting her talk about her feelings and work them out out loud, I bet you are helping her immensely. Take care.
Katie