Approaching two can be a lovely age. Cuteness is prevalent, affection is rife, and all is lovely, gibbly, toddly, wonderfulness . . . some of the time.
Then, a transformation can occur in the space of a nanosecond and it’s out with the cuteness, singing, and cuddles and in with the screaming (oh God the screaming) the throwing things, and the diva-ish, overly dramatic throw-myself-on-the-floor act. Today has been a perfect example. We went for a family walk with the dogs this morning. Grace sat in the little carrier on her Daddy’s back and greeted everyone and everything with a beaming smile, a wave and a “Hiya!” Passers by smile and go “aw” and we raise our eyes up to heaven in a comedy “what’s she like?!” kind of way whilst secretly bursting with pride that she’s being so adorable.
“Hiya tree. Hiya man. Hiya woof woof. Hiya car.” Wave wave wave. Beam beam beam.
She runs and toddles about on the field hugging every dog in sight, waving at every wonder of mother nature, stopping dead still and saying “Wow!” at a complete stranger throwing a frisbee. She runs so fast downhill it makes her laugh and laugh to herself, and we are smothered in a plethora of cuddles and kisses when we get back home. ‘Yes’ thinks I as I put her down for her nap. ‘This is what it’s all about. This is Motherhood.’
40 minutes later and the sudden screaming that would indicate she’s awake would signify that it is, in fact, the end of the world. Her arms are outstretched for me when I go to pick her up, and yet when I do, I am bashed away and the screams become louder. “No no noooooooo!” she cries. No no no what? What exactly is she objecting to? We float downstairs on a sea of tears and she stomps to the kitchen cupboard. “BIC BIC? BIC BIC?” she sobs at me through the tears. Right. Can do. I open the tin and present her triumphantly with a biscuit. She takes it from me, but with another “No no NOOOOOOOOO” said biscuit is thrown violently to the floor and it all starts again. . . “BIC BIC?”
What the hell? Was it the wrong kind of biscuit? I am not hearing her correctly? Should I have presented the biscuit on a silver frickin platter and curtseyed?
The crying subsides but the grumpy mood does not. Every game I try to play is apparently rubbish. Every snack is traumatic to her. The only things of interest are things she KNOWS she’s not allowed. The remote control, my specs, Daddy’s specs, the dog chew, and my fork from lunchtime are all forcibly removed from a clasped tight little fist. What inevitably follows is a very very loud, very very piercing scream.
We are enforcing a parental policy of “ignore the screams completely – she’ll soon get bored with them if we don’t react” but it’s hard. It’d be easier to ignore Susan Boyle singing full pelt in your kitchen. . . whilst using a pneumatic drill with one hand and scratching her nails down a chalk board with the other. (Had a lot of it today, can you tell?)
Then it’s back from Miss Hyde to Dr Gibble again as she sits in her bath and pats the water singing “spashy spashy spashy” and giggling at Mummy blowing bubbles. All is forgiven.
But seriously, the screaming . . . any ideas anyone?