“Swiper, No Swiping,” the three year old boy sang and he spun in circles.
“Unh-Uh,” my daughter groaned and shied away from his display, she ran down the play structure toward me, “the little boy,” she said. I re-directed her towards another part of the structure. Thankfully the boy continued to spin in circles unaware that my child was reacting to him like he was a complete freak. At first I thought that her reaction was warranted, it is quite odd to see someone behave that way, but after a moment I realized, wait, child, you do that all the time. Often whilst calling yourself a princess, wearing a tutu, and waving a wand. Girl, you kinda take that to the next level.
Taking care of a toddler is kind of like being locked up with a small individual who exhibits several different psychiatric disorders.
If I regularly donned a tutu, placed a crown on my head, grabbed a wand, twirled in circles, while calling myself a 'princess' I would be diagnosed with schizophrenia, clustered with delusions of grandeur, and put on medication. Or committed.
Here's a conversation I have daily:
“I want crackers!”
“Do you want crackers?”
“No, I don't want crackers!” Runs away from me screaming.
“You don't want crackers?”
“I want crackers!”
“Can you ask nicely for the crackers?”
“Nooooo!” Dissolves into tears.
If I did this? Borderline Personality Disorder.
Regularly witnessed among groups of toddlers:
“Vrooom, Vroom, Vroom!” Child happily pushes train on tracks.
“MY TRAIN!” New child enters the scene and rips train out of the first child's hands.
“Noooo!” First child dives after second child and a tug of war ensues.
First child: Antisocial Personality Disorder
Second child: Narcissistic Personality Disorder
This morning: wouldn't sit in my lap or get near me.
This afternoon: introduces me to a stranger,
“This is my Mommy, I love her so much!”
I think that's in keeping with a Borderline Personality Disorder diagnosis.
Thankfully most toddlers will learn that spinning in circles and singing is socially awkward and that they should stop. They will learn to express clearly what they want, and eventually have the ability to get their own crackers. Eventually they will learn to share their toys. And hopefully she will be able to express her feelings towards me in a more stable manner; I might have to until after puberty for that one.
And God help me while I try to teach her all those things.