Toddler Demands: What Gives?

Yesterday, like nearly every other morning, I brought Mac downstairs after he awoke.  Here’s what happened in the next 1 minute and 45 seconds:

The minute his little feet hit the floor, he raced to his Legos.  “Lego, Ego, Ego” he demanded forcefully while pulling the bin from the shelf.

I sat down on the floor and opened the tub of Legos for him.

“Fresh!” he said.

“Ok.  Let’s get that wet diaper off of you,” I say motioning towards him tugging on his pants.

“No!  Pants!  Pants!” he whined.

“Sure.  You can just wear your pants for a little while without the diaper.”

I pull up his pants and he shoves three Legos at me, “HELP!”

“Do you want the blue on top of the green?” I ask.

“CRACK!  CRACK!” he orders.

I put the Legos down and drag myself off the floor and head to the kitchen for crackers.

He follows hot on my heels “Help!  Help!” he exclaims, jamming the Legos into my thigh as I’m putting a couple of crackers in a bowl.

“Ok.  Mommy can help,” I sigh, sidestepping him, putting the bowl of crackers on his little table and clicking the Legos together quickly.

“GURT!! GRUT! GRRRRRRUUUUUUTTTTT!”  He wails while pulling on the freezer drawer (because for some sick and inexplicable reason he will only eat yogurt while standing in front of the open freezer).

I feel my eye start to twitch.

When I was working outside of the home, I used to dread getting to work early.  I’m not a morning person and EVERY TIME I’d walk in the front door early, there were two obnoxious Financial Advisors lying in wait.  They wouldn’t even say “Good Morning” before they started ranting and raving and whining about whatever their seemingly urgent issue was that day.  It was positively infuriating.

And NOW?  Now, my nearly two-year old is making them look like complete amateurs.

Is this normal?  Where did he learn to fire of 25 demands in 20 seconds?  I do not speak this way to other people.  (Well, not out loud at least).  Where did he learn this?!

I did a little reading.  Apparently, this sort of behavior is completely normal.  This is what kids his age do.

Oh well, at least he’s on track developmentally. . .Would someone please pass the prescription drugs and booze to Mommy?  NOW!!!!!

Evidentially I Need to Put On Some Pants

Mac at Thanksgiving: “I’m more of a leg man.”

I’ll never learn. . .

If getting caught by the dog walker pants-less wasn’t shameful enough. . .

The other day, when I got home from yet another birding adventure in the Park, I was a little overheated.

So I took off my jacket, shoes and pants.

Makes perfect sense, No?

It’s not like the kid cares if I’m running around the kitchen in a ratty old T-shirt, granny knickers and flip-flops.

Well, at least it didn’t seem like he cared until THIS happened. . .

I’m standing in the kitchen facing the counter, in the aforementioned attire, looking at something on Twitter when I feel a warm little hand hit my right upper thigh several inches from my um rump.

I look down to see if he needs assistance with anything.

Much to my dismay, he does not.

He runs his pudgy little palm down the length of my pasty thigh to my knee and laughs.

I smile nervously.

What. The. Hell. Is. Going. On.?!

I turn my attention back to my phone figuring I shouldn’t make a to-do about it.

And I feel it AGAIN.

This time, I side-step.

And he moves closer, again placing his hand on my upper leg and sliding his palm down to the knee.

What’s wrong with this kid?!  Am I giving him some kind of Oedipus complex?!

His eyes gaze up and meet mine. . .His fleshy little palm resting and inch or two above my knee. . .

I recognize that look instantly. . .OhmywordsonnofagunI’llbedamned!!!

I’VE BECOME HIS PERSONAL LEG LAMP!!!!!

What We Have Here Is A Failure To Communicate

Negative Nelly. . .

Ever since Mac started babbling, I’ve tried to be cognizant of over-using the word, “No.”  Obviously, he’s going to learn the word at some point but I had aspired to use more creative ways to ask him to stop doing the same annoying or dangerous crap over and over and over again.

I get tired saying the word.  Certainly he must tire of hearing it.

I thought I was doing a good job.  In fact, I’ve never heard him say “No.”  Although, I’ve seen him shake is head in a side to side clearly “no” gesture at me a few times.

Still, while he might not say “NO,” he certainly grasps the concept.

How do I know this?

Because he busts out the word “HOT” on me at least once every 5 minutes.

At first I thought it was adorable.

Maybe he thinks I’m a hot mamma?

Then I started putting the pieces together.

Yeah, I’m a genius.  His whining and displeased body language started to clue me in that his version of “hot” had a definite negative connotation.

He refers to everything he wants nothing to do with as “hot.”

Dinner?  He pokes a finger into his black bean quesadilla and exclaims “Hot!”

Needs his nose wiped?  Vigorously thrashes his head back and forth.  That tissue is “Hot!”

Time to put on shoes and socks?  “Hot! Hot!”

The car seat is apparently boiling “Hot!”

Getting his hair washed is scalding “Hot!”

Having his diaper changed is apparently as “Hot!” as the depths of Hell itself.

Where did he learn this magical word?

His Father, of course.

Two Valuable Parenting Lessons, Reluctant Mother Style

You might recall in my last post, I decided to be somewhat uncharacteristically kind and non-judgmental of fellow Mother I encountered in the Park.

Yeah.  That feeling was nice while it lasted. . .

Yesterday, Mac and I took a long walk to Fells Point.  We hadn’t been to the area in a while and the weather was so nice, I decided why not?  The only things holding us back where my usual daily battles with dog hair, cat puke, and the laundry.

I’m so glad we went.  I learned some valuable parenting lessons!

Let’s start with the disgustingly dirty, dreadlocked 20-something chicks in the ripped clothes.  At first I felt a little sympathetic for them.  I mean, what 20-something wants to walk around barefoot in a torn circa 1992 dress?   However, my sympathies turned to annoyance when I realized they were carrying backpacks that cost as much as a dinner for two at Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse.  Ech.

Clearly, they weren’t victims of the City’s lackluster social services system. . .They appeared to be the offspring of parents of at least modest means and they apparently dislike soap and the establishment.

I don’t mind if you are anti-establishment, but come on, at least be authentic.  You don’t have to pretend to be homeless to effectively bring about social change.  Sitting at the corner of Broadway and Thames with an expensive backpack and a guitar, staring at your smart phone is likely not going to help you change the world.

Where are their parents?  Dear lord, I’d be a wreck if I knew my daughter was wandering the streets barefoot day and night, eating a steady diet of processed Subway lunch meats, skipping bath time.

Granted part of me would also be pretty angry.  Clearly, those $35,000 annual payments to the private liberal arts school of her choosing was a complete waste of my resources.

Lesson:  Try not to raise lazy assholes.

Then we encountered Pigeon Boy and his derelict Mother.

Call me crazy (that’s fair), but I don’t think you should allow your kids to taunt animals.  Any animal.  Ever.  Period.  Animals are unpredictable.  And frankly, it’s just not nice to harass them.

Mac and I sat on a bench throwing Cheerios to the pigeons and house sparrows.  Mac is really into feeding the wildlife these days and he was enjoying himself.  So you can imagine how annoyed I was when some dingaling unleashed her 4-year-old son on the unsuspecting birds.

He came barreling towards the birds at breakneck speed making some loud, annoying growling sounds.  The birds fled.  He and the Mother laughed and laughed.  The birds came back.  Repeat.  Repeat.  Repeat.  Repeat.  Repeat.  Repeat.  Repeat.

I glared at the Mother while quietly explaining to Mac that what that little boy was doing wasn’t nice and we never, never approach any animal in that manner – not even a pigeon.

Jesus, there’s a playground two blocks away.  Leave the birds alone already.

Lesson 2:  Unless you want your kid to grow up and get mauled by a bear, or become a serial killer, don’t stand idly by while they taunt animals.

That’s all I have for now.  You’re welcome.

Imitation is the Sincerest Form of Annoying

They say toddlers are supposed to imitate things that adults do.

They say it’s integral to their development.

They let on like it’s adorable and wondrous.

They are jerks.

With the exception of the kid learning how to “phish in” birds, every other adult behavior he’s imitated annoys the shit out of me.

It all started a few months back.  We went to Florida for a visit with some dear friends.  You know what he learned?  He learned how to fake cough and imitate an arm gesture.

The cough?  Now, every blessed time he does it, I’m convinced he’s nearly choking to death on some piece of filth he’s picked up off our floor.

The arm gesture?  Sure it was cute when we were watching the Stanley Cup play-offs and it was accompanied with an adult screaming “GOAL.”  In the absence of such fan-fare, it merely appears he’s the youngest card-carrying member of some Hitler youth organization.

Know what else he’s learned?  Daddy thinks belching is hilarious.  Every meal, our 15-month old tries valiantly to produce an earth-shaking burp in an effort to make his Father laugh and laugh and laugh. . .Ugh.

But wait!  There’s more!

He also imitates me.

And it’s revolting. . .

He doesn’t grab a pen and try the NYT Sunday crossword.

He doesn’t pretend he’s reading or writing. . .Or painting. . .Or taking photos. . .or playing music. . .

He doesn’t imitate any sort of higher cognitive or pleasurable pursuits. . .

Rather, he takes his bottle or sippy cup and pours liquid all over his high chair tray (or the floor) and proceeds to mop it up in a wide swiping back and forth motion with his favorite burp cloths. . .

Like?

HE’S CLEANING SOMETHING!

So yes, this is apparently the example I’m setting for my son. . .

Mommy cleans.  

Mommy has a law degree, a million things she’d love to learn, has a ton of interests, and actually knows some pretty cool stuff. . .yet, it appears all she does worthy of imitating is mop up shit all day long with a dish towel.

Sigh.

Oh well, at least he isn’t cursing under his breath while he’s doing it. . .

Yet.