| Melody awoke when she heard Becky in the next room trying to coax a tired Rowena to get dressed.
"You will do as you're told! I need to get Patricia out of bed. When I come back, I want to see you dressed with your hair combed and your shoes and socks on." Ten minutes later, Becky returned to find Rowena partially dressed with tears streaming down her face.
"You are disobedient!"
"But I...I need help! I can't do this!" Rowena threw her pants on the floor and proceeded to wail.
Melody opened her door and peeked into the child's room. When she met Rowena's gaze, she made a funny face and was rewarded with the hint of a smile. It was then that she saw Patricia also standing in the doorway with a mean smirk on her face.
"You need to go brush your teeth," she softly commanded the girl.
"No," Patricia said.
"Brush your teeth!" Becky commanded when she noticed Patricia.
"And why aren't you dressed, Melody?"
"I can help Rowena," she said, refusing to answer the question.
"Nonsense! She needs to do this on her own."
Melody saw the tears start to form again, so she quickly broke in. "I'll teach her how to do these things so this won't be so hard."
"I've had enough of this. See if you can talk some sense into the child!" As Becky turned away, Melody sighed with relief.
"What happened? Why were you sad when Becky came in?"
"I can't!" she wailed, kicking the pants toward Melody.
"Okay, put them on, and tell me when you need help." Rowena did so, and Melody could see that she struggled with the button.
"Noo!" the frustrated girl said, stamping her bare foot on the floor.
"I....no...I can't, and...and I have to go potty!"
"Okay, I'll help you. Take some deep breaths for me, okay?"
She reached out for Rowena's hand and led her to the bathroom. When she emerged, Melody asked, "Did you use potty paper?"
"Uh-oh!...I forget." She clearly thought she'd get in trouble, and her lower lip began to quiver.
"You just forgot this time, and that's okay. It has been a hard day. It's important to use potty paper, though, because you don't want to be all yucky," she continued to explain as she heped the girl get cleaned up.
"Okay, now it's time to wash your hands."
"No," Rowena whined.
"You don't want your hands to be yucky either!"
"No," Rowena agreed, clearly resigned.
"Okay, let's finish getting dressed." Melody looked at the clock and realized she had fifteen minutes to dress and prepare for school.
"Okay, let's see if you can put your shirt on before I get back." She dashed to her room and hurriedly grabbed something to wear, along with a brush. Rowena had her shirt on and was already working on putting her socks on.
"I am so proud of you!" Melody said. When her head emerged from her shirt, the girl was beaming. She had put shoes and socks on.
"Good job!" After I get dressed, I will put your shoes on."
Finally, the job was finished, and both girls hurried to the cafeteria for breakfast.
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