This is Alice’s sad face.
This is how it went down:
She asked if we could go to the grocery store “right now” to buy some “yogurt drink.”
I said we could go, but not “right now.”
Then she pinched me.
I was a little confused. “Are you being silly, or being mean?”
“Being mean,” she said.
“Oh, then I think you should go sit quietly for a little while.” I led her to a chair, then picked up a paperback and took it into the next room.
The thing about Alice is, she’s a stubborn enough kiddo, but also really sensitive. So within in a minute or two of being told she needs to sit quietly by herself – almost without fail – she comes running toward you, whimpering, and jumps into your chest.
“I just don’t want you to be mad at meeeeeee!” she cried.
“OK,” I told her. “I’m not mad at you. But can we talk about it for a sec? I don’t like it when you pinch. Pinching isn’t very nice. Pinching makes me sad.”
She looked at me, put her hands on my cheeks and said, “Your mouth is making me sad.”
She isn’t old enough to sass. It was sad and sweet and completely earnest, so I figured we were done talking about it.
“OK. We’re OK. We love each other. So much. Even when we’re mad.” All was forgotten. Kisses, hugs, etc.
But it took a little while to shake off her sad face.