…but they are so damn cute.
A day in the life of a very tired father
You have always heard about the “terrible twos” and perhaps thought that those children had sub-par parents when you see a live episode happening in the park, store, or public area. Kids are, after all, the result of their environment and training, right? The answer is somewhat yes, but there are so many factors that are out of parental control… you know, like just being 2 years old. Don’t judge parents you don’t know by observing a single event, by the way. We’re doing our best out here, and this shit is difficult sometimes…
Here’s the deal; Lola has been waking up at night for five nights and saying she is scared. She won’t go back down for anything except cuddling with her mom in our bed. She is also a “terrible two”-year-old and has been acting bratty, demanding, whiny, and throwing a lot of things lately (which puts patience and calmness levels in the “needs improvement” category). She kicks and groans while she sleep with us too, so nobody is getting much rest no matter what we do. It’s getting difficult on patched together three-hour sleep nights.
After a long night of her kicking me in the cheek, eyeball, and unmentionables, I’m frustrated with her because she won’t eat her breakfast and wants me to open a candy bracelet for her. That ain’t happenin’. Here are the puppy dog eyes she is trying on me.
I was just daydreaming about how nice some toast, eggs, coffee then a nap would be when suddenly she is ready to go outside and build a giant snowman, following through on her Frozen audio training (courtesy of Disney Hypnotics, LLC). Let’s be honest, the nap isn’t ever going to happen again anyway. Lola quit napping at 18 months. She needs to be active and entertained, so here we are deliriously building snowmen.
After flashcards, a bath, three outfit changes, lunch, and crawling through her play tent, we are back outside for more snow building. We’re running out of snow because the sun came out, so we are making Snowgies instead and putting them up on the fence posts. Thanks again, Disney.
Really though, with the delirium, I am having a blast building these with her.
Meanwhile, I have been trying to keep her from saying “damn.” She says things like “oh, dammit” and “this damn [whatever toy]”… the problem being that if I tell her not to say that, she doubles down on it. Tera and I curse like drunken sailors on shore leave once she is asleep or otherwise gone, but we are fairly perfect at omitting our swearing around her. Where is she getting this from? She also intentionally peed her pants twice while looking at me with a stare that says “bring it on, old man; what are you going to do about it?” Potty training is going perfectly, except when she feels like being defiant. I think I have heard “I don’t like you!” at least five times today. What am I doing wrong here?
One of the things that makes toddler parenting difficult is that you have to keep going no matter what. There isn’t an option to just quit and go to sleep for an hour. Even after five days of getting about three hours of sleep. The closest thing you can get is corrupting them with tv, and that is bad for everyone if it isn’t very occasional.
Momma called and said she is on her way home from work. We’re (I’m) eagerly awaiting for her on the porch now. Relief shift is on its way!
I don’t even remember taking this picture. Thanks again to Sir Sleepimus McDepravation.
As an ending to this delirious rant of parenting, the real message here is that I totally will do this again, and voluntarily. I love this little girl with all my guts. Through all of the difficulties and challenges surrounding days like today, the vast overall feeling of having made a human and trying to raise them well is delightful, full of true love, and something I don’t ever want to miss out on. Today, of course, I just want to quarantine her in The Boo Box (see “Hook”) and go to sleep for five hours, regroup and restart.
My goal in writing this is to put out on the internet a quick, basic story of a difficult day with a “terrible two” so that you don’t have to feel like you are a horrible parent when you are sitting on the toilet Googling about how to calm down/stop/reprimand your wild two year old. Bad news for the first-timers out there (me being one of those): “Deal with it” is truly the best advice you’re going to find on this topic. You have to live through it.
Please let me know about some of the horrible things your two year old has done in the comments section! We need each other to reassure ourselves that we aren’t bad parents, going crazy, or have a particularly troubled child on our hands.
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