January 23, 2009 - Friday
When my kid was a teeny tiny baby, and she screamed constantly, I was sure that she could be the spawn of the devil. What I remember most vividly from that phase was that everyone who has had kids told me that the colic was "the hardest part" and that it "gets easier after that." Those assholes were lying.
Lila is starting the "terrible twos" at 18 months. If this is any indication of what kind of relationship we will have when she is 14, I am seriously ready to bail out now. She has suddenly become more demanding and has learned (not from me) that if she can't get exactly what she wants at any given moment, that the best reaction is to throw herself on the floor and cry until she throws up.
And there is no substitute for what she wants. For example, if Lila decides she has to have animal crackers in her Thomas the Tank Engine cup, and her Thomas cup is at my mothers house she will not simply accept them in any other cup or out of a cup or even in a pile that she could swim in. She screams and writhes on the floor like she is on fire. And I hate to admit it, but I hate her when she does that. I have no patience for it. Last night I picked her up, put her in her room and closed the door, which is what everyone says I need to do when she gets like that. The theory is that without the audience she will either knock it off after a few minutes or tire herself out. Lila pounded her head on the floor and screamed and screamed. 20 minutes later she was still crying and when I went in, she was like a feral animal and faught my attempts to calm her down. I started crying and Ben took over and managed to get her to relax with a bottle (yeah, I know).
She does this at least once or twice a day and it isn't just with me. She pulls that shit at my mothers house too, but the difference is that Grandma will just give in and let her have whatever it is that she wants so that she will stop crying. I tell her this isn't helping but she says it isn't her job to discipline.
Here's the thing. I have been a reluctant mother from the start. It's hard to admit that because society tells me that it makes me some kind of awful person. But I don't believe it's that unusual. I look back at my childhood from my newfound perspective and see that same exasperation on my mother's face, and although she would NEVER admit it, I know that she often felt like running away too.
It's impossible to describe the mixture of feelings that I have. I love her. She is cute and brilliant. It is fun watching her learn new things and I want to tell everyone every time she makes me proud by recognizing a picture of Elvis or bobs her head and tries to make the goat horns when Led Zepplin comes on the radio. But those things are broken up by these truly AWFUL bouts of what I would call PURE EVIL and I just want to be left alone...for days or weeks maybe.I don't know.
There is no advice that can help this because I have tried all the angles. Apparently I just have to ride this phase out, right? But then what about the next awful phase?