Adventures with the Toddler – Chapter Eleven: Toddlers; who’d ‘ave ‘em

Da is out of favour at the moment for a reason he does not know. Anything he attempts to do for the toddler is shunned and the call of “no! Mama do it!” rings through the town.
“Help me with your peely egg.”
“No! Mama do it!”
“Let’s get your pants on.”
“No! Mama do it.”
“Strap you into the car seat here,” as I’m kicked in the eyeball.
“No! Mama do it!”
“Let’s get you out of the seat.”
“No! Mama do it!”
Up until last week she would help me make breakfast. It was one of our things.
“Want to crack that egg?”
“No! Need mama.”
“Mama’s in the shower. We’re making breakfast.” More howling.
“Need mama.”
“She’s only 10 feet away.”
“Need mama.”
“Give the poor woman 5 minutes to herself.”
“Need mama.”
The call for the last week.

Weekends are gold for me as I get time with the toddler, but lately she forbids me from doing things.
Example. I place it in the shopping trolley and give it its free Woollies banana as the wife takes full advantage of her freedom and vanishes among the shelves. After delivering the fruit to the toddler, I become obsolete and deemed unworthy to even push the shopping trolley. If I touch the trolley I am shouted at with the cry of “no! Mama do it!”
There have been occasions lately where the wife has found the toddler and I in the same place she deserted us, as da had his hands slapped away anytime he touched the shopping trolley.
The toddler and I also had our first real disagreement today as the toddler went back to its default setting of ‘no.’ The ‘no’ thing isn’t amusing any longer. What is amusing however, is how it talks in its sleep. The wife and I have stared at it as it converses with whatever creature is prancing about on its forehead.
On Friday morning, I was quietly getting my socks out of the drawer in the dark. It’s one of those moments where one is trying to be quiet as can be so as to not wake the ‘womens’ of the house. So, there I am, knees and back creaking. And as I pluck a pair of socks from the drawer – the toddler sits bolt upright, opens its eyes and looks about in the darkness, before its gaze settles on its naked da, half squatting with socks clasped between thumb and forefinger as he stands frozen, breath held, knees groaning and balls gently swinging. We lock eyes and it stares at me for a full 3 seconds before saying, “fuck it” and going back to sleep.

It has an imaginary friend called Henry. Henry is a tiny ‘rawar’ – as in dinosaur, that lives under the grass blades. Henry is friendly. There is also a spider that appears in random places who is also friendly. The friendly spider thing makes da the killjoy by explaining to the toddler that she’s Australian and Aussie spiders on the whole aren’t friendly. There is also a massive blue rawar with blue spots we need to hide from. But big rawars are afraid of da, which makes me feel like a king as I lift the toddler into my arms to protect her from the thunderous blue monster menace by throwing it my best blue steel look.
Now – let’s be honest. I have tripped-balls in my time. I once thought I was a cartoon character with swivel-hips like a lego person that survived by plucking butterflies out of the air as I lay on a grassy hillside beneath a green cloud that gave me water. That was cool – I could have stayed there – but I would love to hang out with a tiny dino that lives below the grass. Although – there was this one time I…

On a more serious note. We had the toddler into the Children’s hospital last week with suspected measles. How that could be a thing floored us as all her shots are up to date. We believe in science and herd immunity. The Children’s hospital are amazing and there were kids there much sicker than the toddler. But she got a government tacking number due to them thinking it could be measles. They took swabs and let us out of the isolation room to go isolate the toddler at our home. No one could figure out what this illness was. I found myself wondering if the tracking number would flag the toddlers Dutch passport and have her file slapped on Dutton’s desk. Anyway, turns it was a viral infection of some description no one could identify and not measles. But getting panadol into this kid is like putting boxing gloves on a cat. But we’ve covered this before.

Now back to our disagreement. The toddler threw cornflakes on the floor tonight. I asked her to pick them up and she refused. She then asked for “Bananas in Pyjamas” to be played and da refused.
“Pick up the cornflakes and you can watch nanas.”
“Then no nanas.” Discipline right? I got this.
“Pick up your mess.”
“Then no nanas.”
This went on for an hour and it still has no resolution. But I find myself admiring her determination not to back down while being slightly pissed that I suck with discipline.

She’s gone to bed without seeing her nightly “Bananas in Pyjamas” and the cornflakes are still on the floor. I want to leave them there until she accepts she needs to clean up her mess.
I could be waiting a long time.

She also wouldn’t give me my cuddle or kiss goodnight. That one broke my heart. I live for those cuddles. But it’s obviously all a part of growing up and going through things. Perhaps she still feels like hell getting over her illness and just wants her mum. I get it. Some days i feel like hell and only want Jack Daniels. It’s another wave on the ocean of toddler-hood.

A great movie quote has been rattling about in my brain. “No one can eat fifty eggs.” I have held this to be true, until I met the toddler. But that is for the next installment.

FUN FACT: She loves animals and really wants a guinea pig. She asked me for a guinea pig. Which means I have to get 2 so it has a friend.

I’m buying guinea pigs aren’t I?

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