They Break You Down and Lift You Up

Some days with Alex can feel like a roller coaster ride. The ups? Way up, sky high! The downs? You crash and burn. And then sometimes fizzle for a while longer.

It’s hard not to take the rides with him. When he’s happy and charming it’s impossible not to smile. But when he isn’t? Well…

“Some days I don’t wike you, Mommy. I don’t want to be with you.”

Ouch, kiddo. Ouch.

The things that will come out of his mouth can be rough to hear. There is no filter; he just says exactly what he’s thinking, when he’s thinking it, with no ability to regard the effects it has. He is three, after all, so it’s not like I expect otherwise.

And even though I know that these mean things he’s saying are simply in response to being told “no” about something (a treat, hitting people, watching another show, wearing pajamas to school), it still catches my breath momentarily. And even though I know that he doesn’t mean it, doesn’t even fully comprehend the meaning of it, it’s still saddening.

But then, just as quickly, he can make everything better.

“You’re so beautiful, Mommy. I love you.”

So simple. So heart warming.

And especially so sweet with a kiss that tasted just like an M&M.

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Tough Life

Generally speaking, I try to avoid drama. I am not a gossip. I don’t get involved in other people’s business. It is not my place to have an opinion about someone else’s marriage or children unless they ask for that opinion. It is not my place to share information that someone told me in confidence.

I like to be drama free. I have enough drama in my life living with a three year old, after all.

Getting dressed in the morning? Drama. “But, Mommy! I don’t wike dat shirt. It’s too tight! No, I don’t wike dat shirt! I don’t wike buttons!”

Breakfast time? Drama. “You didn’t cut it up right! No! You’re ‘opposed to just do half! NO! Daddy doesn’t do it dat way!”

Dropping off at school? Drama. Whispering, getting teary, tucked between my legs and wrapped around them with his head buried in my stomach: “But, Mommy? I just want to stay with you. I wove you. I just want to stay home. I don’t wike school. I don’t wike school at all! I wike staying at home all day with you.”

Picking up at school? Drama. Running away across the room and beginning to sob. “I don’t want to go home! I love school! I want to stay and pway with dese toys! I don’t wike any toys at home.”

Dinner is the same as breakfast. Drama. “I don’t want dinner! I’m not hungry. I just want a snack. NO! Not dat! I don’t wike ::insert food he eats regularly and loves::!” whine whine whine about something, start crying and come over to me with arms wide open for a hug because he is just so upset about life.

Bedtime? You guessed it. Über Drama. “I just want to sweep in your bed. I don’t wike my bed. I wike your bed. I’ll be scared if you leave me in my bedroom all by myself. Pewwy da pwatapus and me will be scared all by ourselves in bed if you leave and we just want to sweep in your bed.” Tears fall and even when he isn’t actively whining he is so very sad and serious.

When Alex tries to put together legos? Drama. He grunts and groans and gets so angry at himself and the legos and anyone who happens to be around because it’s hard. He sighs and moans and throws things on the ground in frustration before storming away, eventually crying.

Life is just tough when you’re three. You have to wake up (probably in your parents’ bed), have someone help you get dressed (gasp!), have someone make you breakfast that you have to eat (gasp!), be driven to school while playing with toys, spend all day playing with toys at school only to come home and play more and sometimes watch whatever movie you want (but, gasp! It’s probably not the one you want still!), have someone make you more food, cut it all up for you (gasp! It wasn’t perfect!) and then read to you and sing you songs until you fall asleep in your handmade bed (gasp! It’s too small apparently (it’s not) and isn’t perfect for some reason) with a pillow and blanket that you picked out…

Yeah, life is rough for three year olds. They’re lucky they make up for the drama with hilarity and adorableness.

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Not Quite “The Talk”

As Alex and I were driving to his very first dentist appointment, he asked me where we were going. I told him we were going to a hospital and inside of the hospital are lots of different offices, including his new dentist. He asked what else was in this hospital.

“Well, this is actually the hospital where you were born!” I said cheerfully.

Then it all got a little complicated. I guess I haven’t mentioned the whole “being born” thing since pre-one-thousand-questions-per-statement Alex. “What’s ‘born’?” “Where was I before?”

After approximately twelve more questions and my attempted answers: “Why did you and daddy make me?”

What a complicated question from such a small person.

I started to say “When a man and a woman love each other very much…” but stopped myself. First of all because it doesn’t always happen, ::ahem::, on purpose. Second of all because I don’t want him thinking a baby can only occur when a man and a woman love one another. So, I went down what I thought would be a very straight forward path.

I told him that he was in my belly for a while. He started out super duper tiny, too small to even see, and grew and grew inside of me until he was too big for my belly and then he came out and was the cutest baby ever.

Unfortunately, that didn’t fix the questions.

“But, Mommy? Why did you eat me?”

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And now he likes to tell people that girls have a uterus.