A long day with a little monkey.
I know I have it easy. I’m a work-from-home dad whose three year old is pretty well behaved; he doesn’t often throw tantrums but when he does they’re pretty mild, he can (mostly) entertain himself with his toys, and he enjoys spending time with me. I know his worst days are some kids’ best days. Whenever I think I’m having a rough time with him I somehow run into another parent with greater difficulties than mine, and I’m given some much-needed perspective. Compared to some, I know I have it easy.
But man, that little monkey wore me out yesterday and he did it in the most insidious way imaginable… passive aggressively.
It started with him waking me up far earlier than usual, so the day started on a weary note. With my defenses and patience weakened, he proceeded to spend much of the day doing the one thing that gets under my skin faster than anything else he does: ignoring me.
That may not sound like much, but a long day of having to repeat myself at increasing volumes slowly wore at what little patience I woke up with. And it wasn’t just ignoring me. When he kept “not hearing” the things I asked him to do (like follow me to the bathroom so we could brush our teeth or go to his room to get dressed for preschool) I would physically collect him by taking his hand and encouraging him to follow me, upon which he would whine and go toddler-limp to further resist me. That was my entire day yesterday. Getting into arguments with and dragging around a three year old.
I know it could have been worse, but man that little monkey wore me out.
And before anyone suggests I should get his hearing checked, he responds just fine and enthusiastically when I even so much as whisper things like “playground” or “cupcakes.”