Toddler behavior can sneak up on you when you least expect it. And you’d better have a fast fix, baby.
At this second, I write this piece with the most freakish motherly glow there is: Today was a *fabulous* day. (That is not sarcasm.) Today was one of those days where I just wanted to squeeze my little munchkins so hard because every time I looked at them I felt overwhelmed with how much I love them. (Again, NOT sarcasm…. I’m convinced this is partly due to me having attended an orientation recently for my daughters [transitional] KINDERGARTEN class. Feelin’ the time pass. Whoa.)
Today, we went to get our teeth cleaned and they acted like the most well-behaved dolls (they actually thanked the dentist, the little brown-nosers).
We then came home and enjoyed a picnic lunch of cucumber-and-cream-cheese sandwiches in our backyard while admiring how blue the sky was shining through our orange tree (thank you Los Angeles weather).
MANY DAYS ARE LIKE THIS, MANY DAYS ARE NOT LIKE THIS. (I mean, most days are genuinely good, but not like this. This was a freak-day.) Lately, most days entail and equal mix of fun, funniness and fighting. (What else can you expect when your girls are 16 months apart in age and want to play with the EXACT SAME THINGS at the EXACT SAME TIME?) I’m handling the situations (what else is there to do?)… which means that a lot of times I seem like the bad guy to them. And when Mommy’s the bad guy (Give that toy back to your sister!) I get wrath. I’m not sure if the 4-year-old’s wrath or the 2-year-old’s wrath is more powerful… but I know that their combined wraths are a *TON* of fun. Ha.
Enter typical toddler behavior here.
The other day, after I pulled away some kind of toy from between the two of them, my 4-year-old yelled at me: I HATE YOU! (And then she tells her little sister, “Tell Mommy that you hate her,” which then her little sister yelled, “MOMMY I HAYYYYYYYE YOU!”) It honestly didn’t bother me that much, except that it was the first time these actual words had been hurled out of anyone’s mouth at me. Already? This is happening already?
So here’s what I did — I encourage you to do the same should you have a situation that requires it:
I picked up our phone, dialed 555-5555, hung up, put the phone up to my ear and went for it.
“Hello, is this The Mommy Company? Yes. I’m wondering if you have any available Mommies that you can send over to my house tomorrow? Because my daughters just yelled at me that they hate me, so I don’t want to stay here anymore if they hate me.” My daughters stared at me in shocked silence. “I think I should get my girls a new Mommy so they can be happy with a new Mommy. You can send someone? Great! Thank you. Ok… yes… send your person here tomorrow morning.”
The reaction was immediate… and just what I had hoped for: “Nooooooooo!!!! I don’t want a new mommy I love yooouuuuuuuuuuuu!” my 4-year-old wailed. She ran to me. The 2-year-old followed. Now they were both hugging my leg.
I hugged them back. “You love me? You want me to stay?” They were screaming “Stay here!” I bent down and sat on my kitchen floor.
“Of course I want to stay here… I LOOOOOOVE you…. but when you told me you hated me, that made me very, very sad and hurt my feelings a lot. I thought you would like a new mommy, since you said you hated me.” I’ve never seen two little heads shake back and forth in disagreement so adamantly. “Ok good. I want to stay. No new mommy. I’ll call The Mommy Company back and tell them they don’t need to send any new mommies here tomorrow. I love you. I’m so happy I can stay.”
And I called The Mommy Company and cancelled my order. And all has been fabulous (for now).
DO YOU HAVE A TRICK TO KEEP YOUR TODDLERS IN CHECK?