No, we don’t have company. It’s more a problem of simultaneous decline into mental illness. Specifically, multiple personalities.
Apple’s primary personality, a sunny little boy who loves “tuks” (that’s “trucks” for anyone who is not raising a toddler boy) and who revels in being given a job to do (throw stinky clothes down the chute? score!), shares space with a clingy, sleep-deprived (but not sleepy!) little whiner.
Orange, who was awakened by Apple’s sleepless state but who would’ve much preferred to snooze another 45 minutes, has been showing off her “NO!” “No, I don’t want that. No, I don’t want that. I want something, though, hey, pay attention to me!” This in place of what I like to think of as the “real” Orange: the one who cracks herself up doing “this little piggy” to her own toes. Or mine.
Raisin, who can generally be counted on to have a million suggestions for what we might do (although admittedly 90 percent of them involve princesses), has only one idea this week: “Let’s play Pretty Pretty Princess!” Bonus feature: any response other than an enthusiastic “yes!” earns “Whhyyyyy” or “Moooommmmm” or “but I waaaaannnnnaaaaa.”
I have to take my fair share of the blame. Late nights at work, too little time with my husband, and my annual fight against the evils of lilac pollen and cottonwood seeds, and I’m throwing some first-class tantrums myself. Mine are at a lower decibal level than the kids’, but still they couldn’t really be called anything other than tantrums. “I KNOW she wants the blankie. You told me she wanted the blankie. She told me she wanted the blankie. I’m very clear on the whole blankie concept. I believe I was also clear when I said she couldn’t have it because it was covered in FILTH from being dragged across the kitchen floor, but nobody listens to me. OH NO.” Stamp, stamp, stamp.
The kids must wonder what happened to the mommy who thinks their jokes are hilarious, their wounds are serious, that their games are fun, and that they are the most adorable kids on the planet. I think we’d all like to see her back.