We Weary All Right

My husband and I thought the parenting thing was pretty easy with Little Man. How hard could it be to raise a kid who was kind, respectful, relatively easy-going, etc., right? So we had another kid and the universe pretty much laughed in our faces when it handed over Baby Girl.

There is so much I love about Baby Girl. And I feel like it’s important to emphasize that before I write anything else. Funny, bright, strong-willed, spirited, loving…did I mention funny, already? She has quite the sense of humor and can already deadpan with the best of them.

But whoa, that child. I’m scare to look at my hair too closely in the mirror, because there are probably gray hairs. Some of it would be due to worrying over her and the rest would be because of how taxing she can be.

Here are a few of the things that might lead to her having a shit fit at any moment:

Baby Girl, eat your breakfast.

Baby Girl, time to take a bath.

Baby Girl, you watched your show, now it’s time to turn off the TV.

No, Baby Girl, I can’t play; I have to work right now.

Baby Girl, it’s time to pick up LM from school.

Baby Girl, here is the lunch you ASKED for.

Baby Girl, I can’t carry you right now, walk and hold my hand.

Baby Girl, let’s work on our letters.

Baby Girl, time to go to bed.

Considering that five of the items on that lists are musts every day, there are lots of shit fits. I don’t understand why it’s so problematic to eat a meal or put on pajamas. Little Man had his complaints over food that was deemed spicy or clothes of textures he didn’t like (hello, sensory issues), but it wasn’t anything like this. Attempts at reasoning with her are fruitless and generally met with her throwing her head back and screaming loud enough that I fear the neighbors will call CPS since it sounds like she’s being killed. It’s her way or it’s hell, so unless it’s one of those minor “pick your battles” situations, it’s hell.

I know some people think we suck at discipline, but we try so hard. We’re consistent, we try to offer choices, we do all the things that are usually recommended for tricking toddlers (well, preschoolers) into behaving. She mostly sees through that and is like “fuck this.”

She makes me so weary and on edge — those shrieks make my anxiety go haywire. Going out in public, going grocery shopping, whatever has me in that anxiety mode, knowing the odds are high that the shit will hit the fan. I just want one day where we do the things we have to do and there is compliance and no screaming. Some people say a compliant child is a child who can’t think for herself or some shit, but I think they’d welcome a compliant day or two if they were in my shoes. When she’s not in that mode, she’s in total sweetheart/hilarious/all the good things mode, so the bipolar joke/misconceptions where people flip from one mood to the other rapidly would totally apply here.

(Can kids this age have bipolar disorder? Maybe the apple didn’t fall far from the tree? Shit, I’m not looking that up and getting my brain off on something else right now.)

Baby Girl is three and a half now. We’ve been in this “phase” forever it feels like. Really, though, she started off refusing to eat food and being very demanding about who held her when she was 6-9 months old, so forever isn’t much of an exaggeration. Much like I did with ages 2 and 3, I’m hoping that some of this stuff phases out as we get closer to 4. (After writing this and reviewing, I realize that the instances of her head banging the floor have decreased big time, so there’s some progress.)

On another note, this child will be going to kindergarten next year. Sure, it’s a year and a half away, but still, it feels so weird to say that, considering she was only 4 months old when I started this blog. A part of me wonders how she’ll be close to being ready — physically she still moves more like a toddler and she rarely lets anyone (including her preschool teacher) know what she knows (like, she’ll say that a T makes the “ssss” sound or that a 2 is a 9 just for the hell of it). But, again, a year and a half is roughly a third of the time she’s been on this earth now.

Now y’all know there is loads of good stuff I could write. Many of y’all have seen it on my other blog, Instagram, Twitter, etc. But I don’t usually write about the more stressful aspects there, unless they’re kinda funny, so this is me venting. I kinda feel like an asshole for venting about a three-year-old, and am aware that this probably reflects on my parenting fails more than anything, but…whew.

I’ll move on to Little Man for the next post.


Dummies And DMX

Like other toddlers, Baby Girl has the uncanny ability to pick up on every word that isn’t quite appropriate for her to say. Even if she hears it just once, her radar goes off and she adds it to her lexicon.

Bilbo had just swiped Baby Girl’s snack off the table, and after yelling at him, she said, “Bilbo a dummy!”

I’d be irritated, too, but that was a bit harsh. “We don’t say ‘dummy’ Baby Girl, that’s not nice,” I told her. “Did you hear someone say it at school?”

“No, Mommy, I hear Daddy say dummy,” she answered.

“Ha ha! It wasn’t me this time!” Little Man, who has been getting lectured over certain words he’s taught Baby Girl, exclaimed. “Oooooooh, Daddy is in trouble! He called Bilbo a dummy when he wouldn’t come inside last night.”

I called Sam in to explain the situation and ask if that were true, figuring that he’d take a hint and say that he shouldn’t have called the dog a dummy.

“Yeah, I called him a dummy, because he is a dummy. He wouldn’t come inside when it was raining.”

I sighed. “But is that a nice word to use when talking about our dog?”

“It’s true.”

Little Man giggled. I sighed a bit louder and gave Sam the look.

“Baby Girl, Daddy shouldn’t have called Bilbo a ‘dummy.’ That wasn’t nice, okay? You don’t go around calling people dummies,” Sam told her.

“Dummy,” she said, with a grin on her face.


A little while later, I was helping Little Man with his homework. He had a thick math packet to complete from when he was absent. I helped him through it, but not without him trying to drive me crazy by getting out of his seat every five seconds to check on something or pee or get a drink or see what Baby Girl was doing with the tablet or to get a snack… It didn’t help that Baby Girl kept interrupting us with her list of demands. “Mommy, you get my milk, please. Mommy, I want a cereal bar. Mommy, I want my favorite sucker. Mommy, I want a THAT.” (When she’s not sure what she wants, she’ll ask for a “THAT” and wait for me to suggest things that she could possibly want.)

“Y’all gonna make me lose my mind up in here, up in here. Y’all gonna make me act a fool, up in here, up in here. Y’all gonna make me lose my cool, up in here, up in here,” I sang. This was better than saying other words.


“Ooh, what song was that?” Little Man wanted to know.

“The theme song to my life. I don’t know, the name is Y’all Gonna Make Me Lose My Mind or something. Let me look it up on YouTube.”

So I did. And I started playing it and then Little Man started break dancing. And then Sam came back in.

“Oh, my god, E, what are you letting them listen to?!” He rushed over to the computer.

“That Y’all Gonna Make Me Lose My Mind song. Why?”

He close the tab with the song playing. “Did you not hear the words he was saying?”

“Just the opening part.”

He whispered some of the rest of the song in my ear. (You can read the lyrics here.) Yikes. Luckily LM couldn’t understand any more of the song, either.

“So, dear, you do realize that you were just riding me about saying ‘dummy’ around Baby Girl, right?” Sam asked. “And then you play a really explicit DMX song to them a few minutes later?”


Things Kids Say: My Favorite Milk

So, Baby Girl is some sort of ninja. We knew the girl had skills, but didn’t quite realize the extent of those skills until the recent bout of sickness.

That’s right, I said sickness. Again. (Again. Again. Again. Because one “again” doesn’t cover it. At this point, I understand if you “X” out your browser tab for this post, since so many of my posts have been about sickness this year.)

Little Man got sick on Monday with what appeared to be the flu. He had the same symptoms as Norah did in January, plus there is an outbreak in our area. Luckily, we had the extra Tamiflu our doctor gave us back then, so we gave him that, and three days later, he was good to go back to school.

We thought we’d be safe with Baby Girl, since she had it before. Immunity or some crap, right? Obviously I either don’t know how things works or she was unlucky or something. Either way, she came down with the same symptoms on Wednesday. But she wouldn’t take her medicine.

“No, I not take that medicine. I not like it,” she told us. “No thank you!”

Fine. We’d be sneaky and put it in her drink.

We gave her some lactose-free milk. “No, not that milk. I want my milk. I not drink that. No thank you.” She hadn’t even tasted it, nor was she in the kitchen when we made it. She just knew.

We tried it with juice. We tried with a Tum-E-Yummy. We tried mixing it in ice cream. We tried soda. She wouldn’t go near any of it. Toddlers are apparently built with a radar than lets them know anytime an adult is trying to be sneaky about something they’re going to consume. It was frustrating, but I was also kinda impressed. And then we tried the same things again yesterday, without much luck at first.

“Baby Girl, if you don’t take your medicine, we’re going to have to take you to the doctor,” I told her.

“Okay!” she said brightly. “I get my ears checked and my pig’s ears checked.”

Really? She had a pretty high fever and had been lying in bed sleeping most of the day. Minutes before she could only muster up the strength to say “Hold, me Mommy” in the weakest voice ever, with her eyes closed. She was like dead weight when I picked her up, as apparently holding her arms around my neck while I carried her would have been too much physical exertion. And now she wants to get out and drive to see the doctor?

I sighed. “Maybe we’ll go tomorrow.”

We continued trying to get the medicine in her. At one point five drinks in five cups were spiked. (Don’t worry, we kept track of everything.) After more refusals, Sam finally put some medicine in whole milk (which she isn’t supposed to be drinking right now).

“Oh, it’s my favorite milk!” she said when she tasted it. And then she guzzled it down. Within the hour, her fever was down and she was running around the house fussing at Little Man for looking at her toys. Today she feels much better and has no fever, just still tired. It’s amazing how quickly kids can bounce back.

Things Kids Say Thursday: My Poop

Sam and I don’t really celebrate Valentine’s Day anymore, but I do make a point to get a little candy and maybe a small toy for the kids. On Monday, Baby Girl and I were shopping and I decided to get the treats. She helped with the candy selection (and repeatedly asked for me to pay for it so she could eat it), and then helped pick out two small stuffed…things  — a donut for herself and an emoji poop for Little Man. 

Why is this a thing? Why?!

Let me tell you, Baby Girl was fascinated with that stuffed poop. After she asked to go see the “fishies,” she held it up and said loudly, “Hey, fish, look at my poop!” I about died laughing.

She got quite a few looks, especially since every person met she would say “I’ve got a poop!” or “Wanna see my poop?!” Plus there was “Hey there, silly poop!” (For some reason, everything is “silly” lately.”

Just so you know, there was fighting over that damn stuffed poop. Lots of it. Little Man didn’t particularly care to play with it, but he also didn’t want BG to touch it at all, because apparently that’s what siblings do. I ended up getting a second poop yesterday on clearance. 

Things Kids Say: Farts

My kids have said lots of stuff over the past week, but not much of it has been funny, as they’ve both been pissy with me. Especially Little Man. I’d say the tween years are upon us, except I checked, and supposedly that age range is 10 to 12. He’ll be nine next month, so I should have a little more time before he rolls his eyes, huffs, and talks so disrespectfully that I almost see red. I was proud of his ability to detect and use sarcasm when he was four, but now? Not as much. Not when it’s directed at me, anyway.

So…funny things my kids said. I checked Facebook, and I haven’t posted a single funny thing they’ve said all week. All week. That’s a long time in mom years. The only thing that comes to mind is something Baby Girl said last night, but it’s more of a crude humor thing than legit funny (well, not legit funny to me, but to Sam and LM, it was hilarious).

I was rocking Baby Girl when she farted on me. She started giggling, so I made a comment about her “tooting.” (When I was growing up, my Southern Baptist grandmother considered “fart” a bad word. We were permitted to say “tootled,” “tooted,” or maybe “poot” if we were feeling bold. But “fart”? Hell no. I was probably more comfortable saying “shit” as a teenager than I was saying “fart” or “darn” even.)

Baby Girl’s response to my comment was, “No, Mommy, I fart.”

“Baby Girl, we don’t say ‘fart,’ we say ‘toot.'” Not that it really makes a damn bit of difference. Gas is gas, but old habits die hard/we’re doomed to repeating the crap our parents/grandparent said.

Baby Girl shook her head. “FART,” she said loudly, as if I were stupid. “Little Man say ‘fart.'”


“No. I not toot. I FART,” she said quite seriously.

I stopped at that. I have enough pride not to argue with a 2-year-old over this sort of thing.

Oh, and that reminds me of another mildly amusing thing she said. I was talking to her about using the potty — telling me when she has to poop or whatever (she was actually telling me a few months ago, but now is adamant that she’s done nothing at all, even when she’s squatting and straining) — when she heaved a big sigh, shook her head, and told me, “I go to the potty tomorrow.” Procrastinating already.

For some news about Little Man that doesn’t relate to him being rude, he found out that he won the school science fair this week. His project, the source of a minor scandal since kids thought he was drinking wine, was a hit. As Little Man is now saying, “Praise Poseidon!” (Yeah, tabling the ‘go back to church’ thing.) He’ll go to the district fair in a couple of weeks. That fair is the day after the district spelling bee (and is the same week of his birthday, whew). The kid is killing it this year!