So my angelic baby who slept, ate well, was delightful to everyone she encountered and complied with all my whims… She has been replaced.
The new model is more robust and far more rambunctious! She is a tornado, scattering everything she passes and leaving it largely destroyed or at least damaged in some painful obvious and unmendable way.
Thea, at one-year and a half, tips the scales at a measly 9kg and is the same height as her 9mnth old friend Violet!
But she is like a pinball, bouncing off objects, falling over, getting knocked over, tripping up, going flying and yet picking herself up with an adorable “oh dear”. Actually nowadays she says “sheet” which I sincerely hope is not what it sounds like!
Friends of ours have a niece who’s favourite new word is “can’t” – she likes to yell it at her mummy in public… so, you know, could be worse!
Although Thea does incredibly cute things – dancing (started at about a 12mnths), spinning around (new), swaying to music and singing along to songs – she also has her own very strong views on what her day should consist of.
At the moment this includes eating more or less constantly. She marches around the house, announcing “EAT” at the top of her lungs. If this doesn’t instantly produce the goods (tangerine, box of raisins, some sort of cake or pastry) then she will attempt to drag herself up into her high chair by hanging off it in an admittedly pretty impressive baby chin-up.
And if that still doesn’t work she will throw herself at my shins, cling to me, half wimpering, half crying “Mummmmmmy, EAT! EAT! Eeeeeaaaattt!” until I relent… And then she won’t eat her lunch and is demanding snacks again before we’re even half way to dinner!
The trouble is this final stage of the demand is also what she uses for every minor and major rebellion and any show of affection. Exhausting!
As cute as it sometimes is, as flattering as it is, I actually hate it.
There is nothing worse than watching and hearing your child cry – and all you want is to be able to calm and soothe them, for them to understand it’s all going to be fine! BUT you are trying to leave the house to go to work and your husband is helpfully telling you that you should just walk away!
Fine for him because he leaves every morning to a cheerful “bub-bye daddy”.
Thea will NOT be strapped into her pushchair either. She’s learned to arch her back so that it’s impossible to strap her in. I stare impassively at the wall, holding her firmly in place until she stops fighting and realises I’m not playing.
It doesn’t always work. Last week she escaped my grip and plunged face first onto the Tarmac. Bloody nose and a grazed top lip! She was fine one minute later – the tears dried but she spent a week with the evidence of my shoddy parenting printed on her face – terrible mummy!