Spinning in circles
My middle child is smart, funny and always active. She speaks 100 miles an hour and she can get really frustrated. Her thoughts are going faster and she tries to get it out, but her mouth can’t go that fast. She starts to spin and spin and spin, moving the whole body and the story keeps coming out better. (She thinks, at least!) Everything is moving fast for us and the story is getting muffled by all the movement.
All the movement is making me sick, I feel like I am on a rollercoaster. My head starts to spin, I feel my adrenaline rising. I want her to stop and for her to just say that damn story. But I can’t. I have to ground myself to support this spinning girl and her stories.
When I couldn’t handle it anymore, I took a comb and told her I wanted to try something.
This is where it all started.
My spinning girl stopped, sat down and let me comb her arm. Very lightly, gently, almost not touching – a feather-like touch.
We pick a part of her body – forearms, shoulders, neck, back. I spend about three minutes on each. Well, on the back she wants me to stay forever. She doesn’t want a strong massage, she needs the “feather” stimulation.
This is the funny part. A kid who is not suffering from hyperactivity would think this type of touch is tickling and would be feeling wired up. In this case, this touch is “combing” (calming?).
Devote 5 minutes a day to massage. Put it on a calendar! (Children with hyperactivity like structure and routine.)
Make them choose the comb. ( It belongs to them only )
Start with the forearms. a) It’s easy to roll up the sleeve, and it isn’t the most vulnerable area. b) Your child has to get used to this form of touch if it is new to him/her. c) Keep asking how it feels! Keep asking about the pressure – harder, lighter, faster, slower… Kids are amazing in expressing themselves what they like.
Stick with it for 5 minutes, unless your kid really loves it. Then offer more.
Make a plan for the next time. I would suggest to start with forearms and then add a shoulder and the whole arm. Slow, longer strokes. To calm a child – go from top down.
Once your child gets used to this type of massage and you see the benefit, the sessions could be longer. 10 min plus.
Offering a stronger touch, with a lotion, would be the following step.
Every child is different. Every child likes different type of touch. If there are no other conditions, this really helped my kid. Every massage should come from a good place in your heart and mood. Never do it if you are angry. Massage – touch is a sacred sense. It connects you to your child. You will develop deeper understanding of their feelings. Connection on a deeper energy level can be amazing for not just the moment but for your future together.
Never force it on your child. If you see that light feather touch is making your child uncomfortable, STOP! I am just offering what helps us.