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10 months late, Little Guy hits the Terrible Twos

Submitted by on Monday, 2 June 2008 No Comment

Originally published April 14, 2008, thehive.modbee.com

Missing: One sweet kid, answers to the name of Little Guy.

There’s someone hanging out at the house who looks a lot like him sometimes – can work those baby blues hard enough to melt your heart, and if that doesn’t do it, he’ll throw in a 1,000 megawatt grin. But the attitude’s changed.

Maybe the last haircut, which took him from borderline Goldilocks to a tough-guy buzz, did it. Perhaps it’s too much pirate play – he can “grrrrrrrr” with the best of them. Or perhaps he’s simply been having a huge laugh at my expense all these months, making me think I was going to skate on the Terrible Twos this time.

I know better now.

Today, the kid who used to greet every morning with a beatific smile pounced into my bed bright and early with a shriek. “Want orangine cones! Want orangine cones!”

I broke the news that there were no scones, orange or otherwise. He quickly switched gears. “Wanna watch Thomas! Wanna watch Thomas!” he wailed. Thomas isn’t on the TV in here, I said. More wails, followed by an alternating chorus of “Mommy, huggy” and “Mommy, no huggy” when I reached for him.

Your brother taught you that, didn’t he?

At least Big Guy had the courtesy to hit the Terrible Twos when he was supposed to – a little early, actually, when That Baby Who Ruined His Life moved in a month before his second birthday.

For the past 10 months, though, Little Guy had shown few signs of wanting to play. Oh, sure, there was his debutante bawl in the middle of the grocery store and shoe-throwing fits for a while when I dropped him off at school.

But those were nothing compared to this morning’s dose of wall-to-wall rotten. Even Big Guy tired of the caterwauling after a while. “Mommy, it’s OK, he can watch Thomas,” Big Guy offered as soon as “Batman” went off. “Mommy, I’ll let him play my piano,” Big Guy said as sonic booms of “play pliano! play pliano!” washed over the living room.

You better believe Big Guy got plenty of big-brother ataboys for that but the problem was, the more Little Guy saw Big Guy try to accommodate him, the more Little Guy wailed for whatever it was his brother had.

Or wailed for no reason at all.

“Make budder gimme blocks!”

“Want milk!”

“No, want yogurt drink!”

“Want fruit woll-up!”

“Don’t want boo-boo choo-choo! Want Christmas Thomas!”

Want to live in the garage until you’re 30?

By then I was convinced he hated me. I was thankful that orange is a good color for him, so at least he’d look nice in that jail jumpsuit. I wondered where I’d gone wrong and second-guessed everything I’d done since the day he was born.

Then I thought back to the day he was born and how he almost stopped my heart because his had quit beating right before the doctor Hoovered him out. And I recalled Big Guy coming to visit us in the hospital that night and throwing a Richter-scale tantrum that had the nurses ready to throw him out.

He hates me, I thought.

Turns out, he didn’t. He was simply doing what 2-year-olds do – rushing head-long into walls to see which ones give and which ones don’t. Declaring their independence in megadecibels, because sometimes when you’re only 2-feet-tall, you have to shout to be heard.

Little Guy had just tricked me into thinking he was going to skip all that. Nope. He’d merely decided to wait.

Anyone know how long the Threatening Threes last?

Copyright 2008 Debra Legg. All rights reserved.

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