I am noticing this a little with Bugs as well. When we have guest in town, my attention is often split between our guest and my kiddos (as it should be). But for whatever reason this can send Bugs in a little bit of a tail-spin. I don't know the ins and outs of what is bringing it on, but I started noticing a pattern. Guests would arrive, she would be shy the first day and then by day 2 she was "acting up" (being more disobedient than normal). Part of it I'm sure is that I was distracted and therefore I was more inconsistent with discipline. However, I started noticing that a lot of it was a cry for my attention.
This last Spring we had over 10 sets of company, so I had lots of opportunities to test out how to best help Bug in these situations. I found that if she felt secure and connected to me it really helped her little heart. Instead of rushing to get back to our guests, I would take the time to tuck her in, read her a story. Instead of encouraging her to "go have so and so tie your shoe... get her snack... read to her..." I would help her and make sure I affirmed my love.
By no means am I encouraging creating a princess, self-centered mentality... We don't even use that p-word at our house... i have been really challenged to think through coming along side my kids, in training their hearts, in helping them understand this big world. I want their hearts to be secure... Not just because I want them to have a great childhood... but WAY more importantly, I think that a child's relationship with their parents has a direct reflection on their view of God. I don't want my kids to remember me as always rushing them, or that I was always more concerned with other people, not them. I want them to see that they are so very valuable in my eyes and in the eyes of their Heavenly Father... He LOVES them and not just "everyone else." I want them to be connected... to me, to others and most importantly to their Creator!
Isn't it ironic the kids that we label as tough, secure, strong-willed, are actually a little bit fragile needing more reassurance and love.
-------------------------------------------Mr. Steady just got done "proofing" this for me... well, because I'm not the best writer... and his first comment was, "Bug sounds a little bit like her Mama!"