Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Terrible twos and threes

Toddlers are volatile, moody and unpredictable creatures. You must approach them with caution. They have permanent PMS. And there are no drugs for the symptoms. Fortunately time marches on and they mature (slightly). This time last year, taking Christian anywhere in public was beyond stressful. If he wasn't strapped into a stroller or shopping cart, he was a hard-of-hearing, one-man destruction crew. He ran around like a chicken with his head cut off. Sara was no angel during her toddler reign of terror but she could be controlled occasionally. She got used to sitting through our weekly lunch/Costco shopping trip with my dad. She did not treat every store like a corn maze and hide in every aisle. Christian had to be restrained or would disappear faster than Glinda the Good Witch in her magic bubble.

Fast forward a year and Christian is a calmer, more reasonable version of himself. He can hold my hand, walk beside me in a store. We can go to the mall, the bookstore, the doctor's office, even the drug store with minimal drama. I can sneak upstairs to do a load of laundry and not worry that the couch will be on fire when I come back downstairs.

Last week, he got fiberglass splinters in his hand. Note to all parents, letting your kid play with the metal poles used to mark off the driveway for the snow plow is a bad idea. Lesson learned the hard way. I knew something was wrong when he started screaming in pain and would not calm down. Of course it was lunch time and no health care was available. Eventually, he did calm down and nap. At the doctor's office later, trying to explain this bizarre injury, the doctor exclaimed, "Wow, that's a new one.". Thanks, Doc. That makes me feel better. It's not like I let him juggle with our steak knifes. I have to give the kid credit. He sat there like a rock with his hand in his lap while the doctor plucked out dozens of little shards from my baby's little hand. If this had happened last year, he would have had to be sedated and strapped down. He turned on the charm for the nurse while milking his "boo boo hand" for all the sympathy, lollipops and stickers she had. He even thanked her on the way out. Thank goodness he is an older, wiser, more mature and sophisticated 3 year old.

I may use his new found maturity to attempt the pediatric dentist again. Dare I dream?

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