Oh sure, she looks all innocent hereWhen Magnolia was one day old and weighed less than five-and-a-half pounds, one of the NICU nurses handed her to me and said, "This one is ferocious." At the time I loved the description. I thought it meant she was a fighter, that despite her small size and her less than ideal birth, she was going to be fine. And, of course, it did mean that. She is now a bright, funny 35 pound girl who can do imitations and likes to eat brie. But I am starting to suspect that the description also portended a certain character trait, a willfulness that would eventually just kick my ass.
It's bad enough that she looks right at me like some snotty teenager from The Hills and then runs down the sidewalk, or worse, into the parking lot, just to assert her dominance and test my limits. But she has also taken to reminding me of me. I know this happens, that all your worst traits will get mimicked back at you, that as parents the most powerful thing we do is teach by example, with our actions. But do I really need a not-quite-three-year-old rolling her eyes and dramatically sighing "fine" with the trumped up exhaustion of a put upon bureaucrat? I do not. This is just the type of mirror I do not need right now.
What I do need is some advice on what to do to get her to listen to me. Yelling? Doesn't work; she laughs. Time outs? Sort of, but I hate the dynamic they set up. Reasoning? Sometimes, but only if we talk before the event and plan out the desired behavior. What I need is something that will stop her from running away from me in dangerous places and from acting as if she has no respect for me at all. Suggestions? Techniques? New cocktails? I'll take 'em all.
A thing I like
This blog which my friend Miranda, who is the source of many good blogs, just sent to me. I especially like this post about the slow loris, which I've never even heard of, who likes to get tickled. You have to watch the video. It's strangely mesmerizing.