Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Running Away From Ham

E having a sad moment at day care.
I feel like every morning is like the Amazing Race, even today, though more successful than yesterday, was a blur of lunch boxes, neon pink clothing, curls, and one orange sneaker. Then the sounds -- of my nagging voice, Mark’s calm one, and one whiney toddler. Oh, the whining…

“Use your big girl voice.”
But I don’t want to wear a shirt….!
“Here. How about this purple one?”
“No, no, no!!”

And, off she runs, to hide in the corner near the front door.

I finally grab the first shirt I find and try to make it fun… It is the I Rode the Prudent Living Train t-shirt – 3 sizes too big, but I’m desperate. I also realize that it’ll require a warmer sweatshirt over it, but I decide to deal with that later (or let the day care teacher handle it).

“Here you go, how about a train shirt!?”
“YEAH!!” she cheers.

Yeah, happy toddler! I keep my cheer to myself, not wanting to jinx it, then take advantage of the next few minutes of happiness to get her diaper changed, pants and socks on.

Then I find a sweatshirt. But she wants a fleece sweater. Ok, fleece sweater it is. NO, now she wants the sweatshirt. I put both on the floor for her to choose and put on. She picks the sweatshirt.

Mark helps her into her shoes, then she runs up to me in the kitchen, where I’m finishing up her lunch.

“Mommy, I want ham, please!”
“You can have a piece,” I say, as I attempt to hand her a slice.
“NOOOooo!! I want that plate!”
“That’s the plate with your sandwich on it. You can have another plate for your slice of ham.”

I hand her a paper plate with a slice of ham on it. She screams “Nooo,” and throws it on the floor. And, now I’m ticked off. I am patient, and I have raised a good kid. I pick my battles wisely, sometimes letting her do things I wouldn’t normally encourage, because she asks nicely. And, 90% of the time, I have an angel – she knows that she will usually get what she wants (within reason), if she is gentle, nice, and does not whine. And, when I do say "No," she knows that there is an alternative solution -- a compromise, so we have fewer temper-tantrums. We discuss more, we bargain. We communicate. I'm proud of how far we've come.

But, when we do discuss, compromise, communicate, and I give her what she wants, and she throws it on the floor. ARGH!

“Absolutely not! You will pick up that plate right now!”
“Excuse me?? You don’t say no to me. Pick it up now.”

She refuses, so I lead her over to the plate to help me pick it up and put the ham in the garbage. Then she runs back to her corner to pout. I go back to finishing up her lunch.

Then I hear the door close.

Mark says, “Did she just?”
“Yep, she just left,” I said, nonchalantly.
“I’ll go get her.”

“Okay.” Fine. Whatever. She can’t get far, can’t open the door at the top of the stairs. But, did my not-even-2-year-old just run away from home for the first time? Because of… ham? I cringe to think what other tricks she’ll have up her sleeve in a few more months.

Mark came in holding her. She wore an exaggerated pout, pointed right in my direction, from the safety of his arms.

She got her coat on, and somehow we all managed to get out the door on time, hugs and kisses, and I-love-yous all around.

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