In the last six weeks or so, both Noelle and Dryden have fully embraced the Terrible Two's- something that Nick and I have no experience with. Although Noelle is 4 years old chronologically, developmentally, she is closer to 2 years old. Noelle's terrible two's are slightly less irritating; she is exhibiting frustration and is starting to say "No" to things she doesn't want to eat or do and she wants to be held or snuggled as often as we have the patience for. Dryden's terrible two's are horrible. Actually it'll be a miracle if he survives to see his third birthday because the little S.O.B gleefully stomps on every one of my last nerves. His new thing is yelling commands at me as though I am his personal servant: "No Snack!", "Milk Now!", "Stop!" Another new development is throwing things after he's been scolded. Example: "Dryden, please stop yelling!" He'll then look right in my eyes while throwing his milk/cracker/truck/stuffed dog/TV remote across the room- or worse, right at me. I am also no longer permitted to use the phone, my cell, the remote, the dishwasher, my camera, or the washroom without Dryden freaking out. Needless to say, this all makes for a very long day.
Today was a big test for me; Nick left this morning for the cottage for the day, leaving me to fend for myself with the kids for the first time since bringing Raegan home from the hospital. All parents will tell you that they love all of their children the same. Not me- I admit that I have a favorite; today I love Saku the most. The dog was the only one who didn't piss me off on this never ending day. Noelle went off to school and I prepared for an easy morning with just the two littlest Pomainvilles. I failed to factor in a few things: Raegan is going through a possible growth spurt and wants to eat every 30 minutes. (Why so often? Because she's a barfer. She upchucks 50% of her meals...usually directly onto my laps. Awesome.) Overnight she went from being a brag-worthy low maintenance baby into a screaming, demanding milk sieve. Dryden has some sort of bug this week, making him miserable. Well, more miserable than usual. We argued the morning away until Noelle returned home and all hell broke loose. Noelle wanted to snuggle, Dryden was loudly freaking out because I had the nerve to take my expensive camera away from him, and Raegan needed to eat. The name of the game became "compromise." I gave Dryden my cell to play with, I hugged Noelle while I waited for the bottle to warm, and then I mastered the one-armed hold and feed. Our compromise was working well until Raegan barfed all over me. "Jesus!" I yelled. "Shit!" yelled Dryden. Saku pretended to sleep on the couch.
*Sigh* Is it nap time yet??
A sizable nap brought no reprieve from the Terrible Two's. Both kids woke up grumpy. Maybe I did too. We all declared a tenative truce and cease-fire, agreeing to stay in separate sections of the house for the remainder of the afternoon. I began to think- nay hope- that maybe, just maybe, I would make it to the end of this day without having a meltdown. I corralled the little ones to the supper table and ladled some home-made beef barley soup into our bowls, and plucked yet another bottle from the bottle warmer and started to feed the baby. So far, so good. A few seconds later Noelle pushed her bowl off the table and onto the floor as she shook her head "no" while Dryden said, "yuck...Kuku have" and dumped his bowl on the floor for the dog. I opened my mouth to yell at them when Raegan barfed a projectile stream of milk at my chest, on the floor, and on the kitchen counter top. There was an eerie silence for five whole seconds (the eye of the storm?) in which the dog smartly got up and hid from my wrath under the table. Both older kids got a swift swat on the arse and were sent to bed early and probably hungry. I changed my shirt and the baby and fed her another bottle. I wasn't happy about it though, and frowned at her the entire time so that she'd note my displeasure. I then had to clean up all the crap from my kitchen floor. As for my supper? It congealed in it's bowl on the table. I scarfed down a Jos Louis cupcake, and opened a bottle of wine instead. It'll get better and easier...right?? I should buy more wine- just in case.