Toddlers Are Assholes

I know, I know. The title is a bit jarring. But it’s no less true.

I love my daughter. I’m still amazed that at the ripe old age of 45, I was able to not only conceive and carry her to term, but I was able to birth her, and we are, in fact, even still breastfeeding two and a half years later.

But, sometimes? She can be a complete asshole.

Meals have become a hostage negotiation. She’s either not happy with the presentation, the selection, or any other myriad of complaints. Daddy and I just roll our eyes and do the best we can. I can’t lie. I’ve attempted to bribe a few more bites. I’ve offered something I KNOW she will enjoy, but at the end of the day, I’m sick and tired of begging, pleading, and cajoling this pint-sized tyrant into eating her meal.

Fuck it.

Don’t like it? Don’t eat. If there’s a lesson I learned from my son 15 years ago, it’s that I refuse to become a short-order cook again. No way. Here’s what’s for dinner. If you don’t like it, you certainly don’t have to eat it. If it’s not presented in the precise order your exacting toddler brain prefers? Too damn bad. You’ve exhausted all your cuteness points. I vividly recall making toddler meals in addition to adult offerings, and I vowed then that I wouldn’t go down that road again.

So, sometimes, it’s a standoff. Fine by me. To be honest, her behavior makes meals easier. And faster. Last night she was IN bed BY 7:00 p.m. which left the remainder of the evening for me and hubby to relax without the shrieks of protest.

And, the whining. Why must you WHINE. SO. MUCH. If there’s one thing for certain, it’s that in my advanced maternal age, my ears have become much more sensitive. I have always detested whining, but somehow these days, it makes me feel as if my ears are bleeding from the sheer pain. Okay, that’s a bit of an overstatement, but suffice to say, I can’t tolerate it. Call me weak. Call me a wimp. I don’t care. This is precisely why I am thrilled that other people are doing their job to continue the human race. Thanks for taking one or five for this team.

Because this uterus? It’s retired. With honors.

I’m sure a large part of the incessant whining has to do with the fact that our darling daughter at the ripe old age of two and a half years old has yet to grace us with any intelligible speech. She has precisely ONE word, and it’s ‘yeah’. She will answer nearly any query with that single word. You could ask her if she jumped out of a plane today, and she’ll happily retort,

‘Yeah.’

Okay, then.

We had a second speech evaluation today, and we are hoping that THIS time, our gal is delayed enough to warrant intervention. If not, I suppose we shall investigate the options of obtaining the services of a private speech therapist. We’ll likely have her hearing tested to rule out anything there, but short of that being an issue, we’ll just keep plodding along, doing our best to decipher her toddler sign language to keep her more or less placated.

This shit is rough. I can’t possibly convey the level of sadness I feel and guilt I harbor over that fact that our girl isn’t speaking yet. I’ll be the first to admit, I don’t do all that playdate-immersion play-superduperinteractivefunsillyplay-notelevisionallbooks stuff that some mothers claim to do. I would lose my fucking mind. I love my daughter, but in the course of an average 8-10 hours per day, if I played with blocks, puzzles, and Dr. Seuss exclusively, I would likely become a raging day drinker. I feel like a failure for not finding ridiculously fun, educational, enriching activities to fill her days. I admit: I rely on her days at preschool to fill the void where I’m slacking. And, if you dare tell me that as a mother in a similar situation you don’t do the same sometimes, I’ll call you a liar.

Nicely, mind you.

I just wanna make it through the day with minimal tears, minimal nails-on-chalkboard whining, and maximum enjoyment. I dunno. Maybe if I played more silly, yet highly educational games with her, she would just open up her mouth and all those words that are captured somewhere in her brain would just pour out like a waterfall? Maybe she would just recite her ABCs flawlessly as she listens to mommy sing the lyrics for the 3,564th time?

Oh, I can’t lie. It’s not ALL bad. We have our moments of silly fun, happy days filled with lots of laughs and play. It’s just that recently the whining and fish-flopping tantrums sometimes outweigh the good, that’s all.

We’ll get there.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have to go let the ‘boss’ know that it’s time for a nap.

Wish me luck.

 

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One thought on “Toddlers Are Assholes

  1. Love your honesty, Lisa. I wish more mothers would be so transparent. It’s not all rainbows and puppy dogs raising children. I don’t regret one minute of the time with ours, but it can be so exhausting, and yet so rewarding. Hang in there. Because, in bad moments (and good), this too shall pass.

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