I’m really enjoying this phase that Truett and Kirsten are in. They’re adorably inquisitive, somewhat self-sufficient and really great company.
But there’s one thing about kids this age: they just do stuff. Sometimes good stuff, sometimes bad stuff, mostly crazy stuff. In other words, they’re uncontrollably compulsive.
Like they go to the beach and start flinging sand all over themselves, even though they’re going to regret it when the sand ends up in their eyes and other body parts that sand should not be in.
Or they see an anthill and feel the need to stick their fingers in it, even though they’ll feel the wrath of a thousand angry ants descending upon their tiny fingers.
Or they’ll compulsively twirl a dangling wire around their fingers, even though that wire is attached to an iron that’s waiting to fall on them.
Which explains why parents of preschoolers are so naggy and prone to episodes of seemingly random outbursts. We have to tell them “don’t do this, don’t do that…STOP POKING THE CAT IN THE EYE and PICK UP YOUR LEGO PIECES and HEY TURN OFF THE TAP I CAN HEAR YOU PLAYING WITH WATER IN THERE” like eleventy-thousand times on any given day.
Last weekend, we were out shopping with the kids and Tru was fiddling with his water bottle while walking when he dropped and broke it. Mildly annoying, but no biggie because clearly he didn’t mean for it to happen. A little later, we got a cup of Coke to share and Tru insisted on holding it while we walked. It was like an accident waiting to happen but he was all “please, please, let me hold it.”
“Ok, fine, just be careful with it.”
We took several steps out of the shop and sure enough, he dropped the cup, spilling the Coke everywhere. Again, it wasn’t a big deal in the scheme of things but just annoying enough to warrant a sharp word.
“Tru, I just told you to be careful. If you can’t hold on to a cup of coke properly, then you won’t be allowed to hold it anymore, understand?”
He nodded quietly.
On the way home in the car, he turned to us and said “I wasn’t a good boy today, right? I did two wrong things. I broke the bottle and spilled the Coke.”
OUCH. That was like a solid hadouken of mommy guilt to the gut.
“Sweetheart, listen to me, YOU ARE A VERY GOOD BOY. It was an accident and we love you no matter what, ok.”
I hope he knows that.