Friday, 14 March 2014

The TT

No, not Time Trial. And for once in my life I might be sad to be saying that. Because if the subject of this post was time trial, then it would mean that I would have no cause to write about the Terrible Twos. But I do. As over the last few weeks we have somehow wandered, seemingly under the radar and overnight, into this Bermuda triangle of nightmares. My Dear God. My little MD has gone from being the most well behaved, sweet-natured child to a mini-diva of epic proportions.

I may have been a little sceptical before becoming a parent about those mothers who talked of the TTs. I just didn't really believe that the phenomenon really existed and that obviously any poor behaviour in the children was obviously a result of poor parenting and why didn't those said parents just make their children be quiet with a swift clip round the ear? Of course, now I'm here, it's easier said than done and I'm the one desperately shushing my child as she screams like a nut-job for no apparent reason other than to make the whole world stare at me and ask why I'm such a useless parent.

The thing that has shocked me the most though is that it really has just switched on. Last month she was mostly quiet and unassuming; with a bit of a cry and moan if she didn't get her own way. This month she has started to perform fully-loaded, teenager-style hissy fits, accompanied with either the most high-pitched screech known to man, or the whiniest, droniest whinge similarly known. If one teeny tiny teeny tiny thing doesn't go her way, then she is off. It's bonkers. One minute we're playing nicely with the ball thing that the washing powder liquid goes into (I know, we are such a fun household), and the next, bam! Absolutely terrifying piercing scream fills the house, accompanied by stamping feet, bright red cheeks and pummeling fists. And for what, I hear you ask? What can be the terrible, treasonous act I have committed to result in this meltdown? I turned on the washing machine. That was all. Imagine if I did actually do something truly awful. It would be like the apocalypse.

Yesterday's major fit was similarly crazy. MD had been eating her lunch for hours. One piece of pasta every ten minutes and it was getting to the point where she would still have been eating lunch at the same time I was preparing her tea. So I asked her if I should put her pasta in the fridge, so that she could finish it at tea time? Yes, she said, smiled sweetly and started to chatter about eating her pasta at tea time. So I took away the bowl. Cue first installment. Screaming, huge red tears and leg kicks so pendulous I thought the high chair was going to rock off its stand. OK. OK MD, you can have it back, I say, if you think you want to eat it. Yes yes, eat it, comes the reply. So another twenty minutes later, nothing more eaten. I go through the above again, with the warning that this will be the last time. Yes, yes, she agrees, she wants out of the high chair anyway. So I take it away again. And like a mentalist, she goes ballistic. Proper nuclear missile ballistic. In fact, she goes so mad for so long (without me being able to calm her down at all, despite intervention of Lindsay Lohan proportions) that I end up filming her doing it. Full on hysterical tears, with hyperventilation in between each breath - you know the type. Maybe ten minutes later again, she finally calms down with the advent of Cbeebies on the tele and an eventual cuddle from momma. And then she's fine. It's like an explosion in a firework factory but without the Health and Safety Inspectorate coming in afterwards to identify the cause of the bang. There's no one making recommendations on how to avoid similar gaffes in the future. She just gets back to normal and can't tell me why she was so stressed.

The twist in the tail with this saga is that this morning she found the video of herself, during her "iPad time". She honestly must have watched herself screaming and wailing maybe 15 times. Each time it ended, she looked at me in disbelief, as if to say 'who is this freak you have recorded here Mother? I know it looks like me, but it's certainly not me. You need to control her better.' Man. My own baby is now looking at me wondering why I'm such a useless parent.

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