Last night I was, in retrospect, overly angry with Zoë. Almost as it was happening I knew I was blowing things out of proportion and yet I couldn't really help myself. It had been a crappy day and she had, in fact, done something to warrant getting in trouble. Even so, I think I over-reacted.
The problem then becomes how do you express to your 5 year old that you realize you over-reacted without completely undermining your own authority? On the one hand, I don't want Zoë to think she can get away with what she had done, but on the other, I don't want her to think I am completely unreasonable or to be afraid of me. (Well, maybe just not too afraid -- a little afraid is good.)
Sigh. This parenting thing is so hard sometimes!
This morning I woke up thinking about the whole thing and still feeling badly. I told her I was sorry that I got so upset, but emphasized that what she did was not O.K. She said O.K., kissed me and then asked for her milk. I guess it couldn't have been too traumatic -- either that or she is used to my particular brand of crazy.