I have a sore throat today. It's either because I have been slurped on by the germilicious two year old, or because I have been yelling too much today. Regardless, the sore throat means my fingers don't want to work, and so I am going to recycle a story I wrote when the Bombshell was exactly the same age as the Mop is now.
Mud. Clear as.
* * *
I have been trying to get the Bombshell to lose the dummy for weeks, months, probably a year actually. Because she is so tall, and her hair is so long, she looks like a 6 year old with a dummy hanging out of her mouth, a really bad look. So I have been asking, pleading, begging for her to throw it away. Naturally, that just made her want it even more.
First I tried good old fashioned bribery. ‘Put the dummy back in your cot and you can have a biscuit’. So off she’d trot, put the dummy in her cot and return for her biscuit. As soon as she had finished the cookie, she’d trot back to her room, pick up the dummy and stick it back in her gob, with a look that said ‘I DID what you asked, now what are you going to do about it’.
So then I resorted to just being plain mean. I started chopping off thin strips of the rubber end of her dummy (I read about this in a parenting magazine, so it is socially sanctioned meanness). Every few days I would take a few millimetres off, so eventually it resembled a… well it resembled half a dummy. She would still ask for it, and thrown a tantrum if she lost it, but she couldn’t have possibly enjoyed it, as it had no ‘suck’ left in it, and was more like a small rubber bowl filled with spit.
After a couple weeks of this, and more than a few looks from the girls at Childcare who obviously didn’t relish the idea of having to handle such a disgusting object, I was beginning to think that the Bombshell would be married with this foul object still dangling from her lips.
And then, one Wednesday morning a couple of weeks ago – she threw it in the bin. Just like that. I’d like to say that was the end of the story, but it couldn’t be that simple. It set off a chain of events, because approximately 6 hours after she had thrown it away, it was naptime and she wanted her dummy.
‘No, you threw it in the bin remember? No more dummy’, I told her in my proudest voice.
‘Want my dummy!!’, she cried.
‘No, you put it in the bin and now the garbage man has taken it away. And mummy is so proud of you. What a big girl!’.
‘I. WANT. MY. DUUUUUUUUUUUUUUMMMMMMMMMMMMY’, she screamed, and literally threw herself over the bars of the cot so she could go presumably, to find the garbage man and kill him to reclaim her property.
One hand, one bounce. I caught her about an inch off the ground (not sure if she had actually hit it and rebounded) by the leg and chest, and she was rabid. I thought I had about as much chance of safely putting her back in the cot, as I did of winning the lottery, so I went and dragged one of the single mattresses out of storage and told her to sleep on that. Later that afternoon, I assembled her first-ever ‘big girl bed’. So, in the space of 24 hours we lost the dummy and graduated to a big girl bed.
The problem with ‘big girl beds’ (and apart from bragging rights, there are no good things associated with big beds) is that
a) she can get out of it
b) there is heaps of room for 10,000 toys and 10,000 books
c) the sheets and blankets are 4 times as big, which means more washing, and finding all sorts of gross things in the blankets
d) she can get out of it
e) she can hide underneath it
f) it looks like a trampoline to a two year old
g) it takes up twice as much room which meant everything else had to be rearranged
h) and did I mention, she can get out of it.
So naptime and bedtime have become yet another battleground. There is no such thing as plonking her in the cot and walking away know that eventually she will get bored and go to sleep.
She can climb out, or under, or jump, or reach all the stuff up on the wall, or pull all the sheets and blankets off and make a bed on the floor, or wedge almost empty milk bottles down the side (to be found 3 days later). The only saving grace is the fact that our door handles are very high, so she cannot yet escape from her room.
And when that happens…