Monday, September 22, 2008

Monthy report -- 15th month -- WHO THE HELL ARE YOU?

Dear Benevolent Dictator --

First, let me insert this disclaimer saying that I love you very, very, very much. You are my darling, the center of my universe and without a doubt, one person that I would happily lay my life down for.

That being said: WHO THE HELL IS OCCUPYING YOUR BODY AND WHY ARE THEY TRYING TO DRIVE ME TO DRINK? If this keeps up, I'm going to be checking into rehab when you're a teenager.

I say this because, it appears you've discovered how to pitch a fit. You scream, you cry. You have my lungs. Our house has gotten exponentially louder. Neighbors down the street have commented on hearing you pitch a fit. You pitch a fit when you can't go into the sandbox. You pitch a fit when we're out and you're sick of everything. You protest loudly when we don't give you food from our plates ("My mother doesn't feed me. I'm a poor starving waif. Can I have a bite of your food? No, not that bite, the one over there. Thanks.")

More than once, I've had to throw you over my shoulder and go stomping out of an establishment because you've been a bloody diva.

I don't know if it's that teeth are coming in -- this time its the march of the molars, which are always a bear. I suspect we're also transitioning to one nap, which is also rough for me and you. I don't know if it's because you've discovered a taste of independence and now have opinions on how everything should be done (often in the most dangerous way). We've also begun disciplining you, which obviously isn't to your liking.

This past weekend was hard on my spirits. You've been having a hard time sleeping, and (like your mother when she doesn't sleep well) you've been a little less patient, a little meaner and a little crankier. I do not care for the parties you insist on holding in your crib at all hours of the night. We are not in college. You can't call me up at 2:30 asking to go to IHOP.

Your cautious side has come out now -- when we were at your cousin Jena's birthday party, you didn't like the wall-to-wall cacophony of kids. As a matter of fact, you would walk 10 feet into a room, look around at the chaos and then run screaming and crying from the room.

Don't even get me started on how you freak out upon seeing dogs bigger than you.

It all hasn't been me wanting a bloody Mary at 9:30 a.m. though. You are a funny little girl. When you're in your element, you love running around and playing. You love inspecting my underwear and giving me wedgies. You're also starting to do some funning twirling around in circles for no reason, other than it makes you laugh. You talk. A. LOT. Your poor father is never going to get a word in edgewise when you get older.

But it's been hard. I think that some of it is me learning to flow with you, but at the same time keeping you safe from harm and teaching you right from wrong. I remember hearing Dan Savage on This American Life once talking about parenting and how someone said it's like as a parent, our job is to beat the little sociopath out of our kids and mold them into functioning people.

This is a rough task. And given how stubborn and willful your parents are also, it's not going to be an easy one. I have a feeling that this is setting me up for when you're a teenager.

In which case, Lord preserve us all.



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