This is a preteen summary for McKenna from 9-9.25 years old. Information on a nine year old girl. Eating habits, sleep habits, and anxiety for a preteen girl.
Eating is great! It seems like every child has at least one thing that is just a non-issue in life, and for McKenna, the number one is definitely food. She eats well. She likes everything I make. She isn’t picky at all. Her natural desire is to eat healthy foods over junk or sweets.
Sleep is good. McKenna did have a couple of nights during this time period where she got out of bed after being put to bed because she was worrying about something. This was definitely odd for her. I would have said sleep is another one of those things that we just don’t have to worry about with her, but she did have these nights of getting up after bedtime. That has since ended, but it was a thing for a bit.
Something we did for sleep was get her a basic timer so she wouldn’t stay up too late reading. She gets so into books that she blocks the world out, so we would tell her what time to stop reading and go to bed, but she didn’t look at the clock until that time was long past. So we got a timer and just set it so she knows for sure what time is time to put the book down.
School ended well. I always worried McKenna would be a discipline problem in school. The reason I worried about that is that she is incredibly social and talks all the time. The classroom is full of people to talk to and McKenna never met someone who wasn’t a friend. She loves to have fun. So I worried she would be a chatterbox the teacher constantly had to remind to be quiet.
It turns out that is not the case at all. Another quality McKenna has is the desire to follow rules with exactness (which I find ironic considering she has been my strong-willed child…I still haven’t figured out how to merge these two facts together). She tries to follow the rules so perfectly that she is actually better behaved in classes than Brayden and Kaitlyn were…and they were always great!
That perfection and attention to detail comes at a price. Kids who are like that at school often come home exhausted and even snippy. So if you have a child putting 100% of his/her energy into being absolutely perfect at school, expect there to be some grumpiness at home.
This can happen with McKenna, but for the most part, she is a happy-go-lucky type and fine. But she has more grumpy moments during the school year than during summer.
Associated with the sleep issues was McKenna suddenly being anxious. I have literally had the thought before that I am so glad McKenna is so happy and optimistic because it is hard to deal with pessimism in children. Anxiety and pessimism aren’t the same, but I definitely never envisioned myself addressing anything on the worry scale with McKenna. She is so optimistic I thought she would always see the bright side.
I would guess this was in conjunction with some hormonal changes as she was getting older, but it is just a guess.
McKenna was so worried she would die. Anything and everything was possible. She worried about appendicitis, cancer, weird growths, her shin guards would cut into her leg, cut off her circulation, and she would have to have her foot cut off and would die from complications…basically any way she ever heard about or read about was a concern. As soon as we helped her be sure she wasn’t dying from one thing she had a new thing.
McKenna has a mind like a steel trap. If she has heard it or read it, she will remember it forever. She will be infuriating to play Trivial Pursuit with someday. Literally one of the most common phrases from her mouth is, “Did you know…” She reads a lot. She asks a lot of questions.
She also has historically be reckless with her personal safety. She is my only child to have ever gotten stitches. She has a high pain tolerance. I have had to tell her, many times, to be more careful in life. In order to encourage her to take more caution and care, I have explained WHY she needed to be careful in different situations.
Boy did that come back to haunt me during this time.
Every warning she had ever heard was now coming to forefront of her mind and scaring her that it might affect her. Every way of dying she had ever read in a book was now the list of ways she was going to die (and SO MANY books have someone die). She ran down that list of ways.
Fortunately, McKenna is also highly logical. I am logical. I could address her concerns logically.
We worked through why I was sure she didn’t have whatever new sickness she was sure she had. We had some books recommended to us about anxiety and I bough them all. Some were for kids to read and some for adults. She read her’s faithfully and gained some coping mechanisms.
Fortunately, she also had a doctor appointment for turning 9 around this time. I told him her concerns and he really looked her over well and gave her a clean bill of health. That helped a lot.
We really only had this going on for a few weeks. It certainly felt longer, but it wasn’t bad at all in hindsight.
McKenna’s favorite books to read right now are the Warriors books (affiliate).
During this time, McKenna participated and finished up her musical theater class. She performed in her play as Sebastian and did a great job! We even heard someone say Sebastian was the best in the play. She had spring soccer during this time and her team did so well! They took 3rd in the first section and first in the second section. She also did piano during this time.
Then she had summer start and continued with soccer and piano. She also did a rock climbing camp for a week. McKenna loves to rock climb!
A big thing for McKenna in this time period is she got a bunny!
Most of this time was during school, so I will include a school schedule:
7:00–wake up shower/get ready/eat/practice piano/scriptures/prayers
7:00–start getting ready for bed
8–in bed. Lights out by 8:30-8:45
I thought it would be fun to show some highlights from time periods for the child summaries. Here are some favorites from this period. Music is from https://www.bensound.com/.