Daddy is Crapola
Daddy is Crapola
It’s almost been six months now since we’ve had possession
of Matthew and the other day was one of the rare times I’ve actually gotten
angry at him. A couple of times in two
months are not too bad I think, but still I felt kind of bad. It’s been a little more stressful than usual at
work lately, and that day—Wednesday, I think—was aggravating. And I was driving the carpool that day, which
not only means I didn’t get to sleep in the car on the way home but I was the
one fighting the traffic. So when I got
home I was a little on edge.
Matthew was also off his nap schedule. Lately he had been fighting taking his daytime
naps. He used to take one in the morning
and one in the afternoon, then after a couple of months just one a day. Now he doesn’t even want one a day, though he
definitely needs one. If you don’t put
him in the crib at just the right time in just the right delicate manner that
will encourage repose, he will not fall asleep.
He’ll just sit in his crib and babble, and throw overboard his socks, which
he methodically pulls off when you leave his room, his pillow, his little puppy
blanky, and his little stuffed animal that he likes having by. He’ll then just talk to himself in his baby
language, “doo-dah,” “bah-bah,” or “oooh-ah.”
Finally after a while of entertaining himself, he’ll start crying as if
finally he’s feeling neglected, or abandoned, or some sort of separation
response, if babies have the same emotions as puppies. For a few days before Wednesday, he missed
all his naps.
When Matthew misses those naps he gets cranky by
evening. When Matthew gets cranky, he has
a few very annoying mannerisms. He wants
more attention than usual and to be picked up more often; he becomes more
sensitive and will cry at a scolding; and he whines. He whines when he wants something and he
whines when you’re not attentive. He has
two sorts of whines. One that’s short in
length and has the intonation of a wimpy mewl, asking for this or that or to be
picked up, as if he’s using the whine to importune. The other whine is a response whine, longer
in length, pitiful, as if he’s been hurt emotionally and is an inch away from
breaking into a cry. So when I got home,
Matthew was droopy eyed and in his cranky, mewlly mode.
My operating manual says this whining:
Forget a dripping faucet, fingernails on a blackboard, or squeaky
brakes. A young child’s whining tops
them all on a list of tortures. Like a
knife inserted, then slowly twisted, whining, which is really a kind of low-grade
crying, can get under a parent’s skin as no other behavior can. In fact, given the choice, many parents would
rather deal with a full-blown tantrum—which erupts and subsides—than listen to
the steady, unrelenting, nerve-grating, sound of a whiner in action.
Expect: The Toddler Years, Heidi Murkoff, and others
So that Wednesday afternoon was a perfect storm of daddy on
edge and Matthew in whiny mode. He
wanted to be picked up, well I couldn’t at first. I had to look something up on the internet, he
wanted to sit on my lap. He wanted the
pen on the table, I had to write something down. He wanted food, it wasn’t ready yet. He started pulling at the electrical cords, I
had to stop him. When I went to feed
him, he didn’t want to eat. Oh! Short whine, long whine, blubber. Short whine, long whine, blubber. Short whine, long whine, blubber. Aaaack!
No, I did not strike him.
I would never do that. But I did take
him out of his high chair and put him down roughly. I think I yelled, “then go to bed hungry.” He was then wailing, crying for what must
have been the third time in twenty minutes.
I just told my wife, to take him, finish feeding him, I had to get out
of the room. At that point he was sitting
on the kitchen floor with his eyes squeezed together, his head tilted up, his mouth
gaped open, tears rolling down, and bawling.
After comforting and feeding him, my wife took him straight to bed and
he fell straight asleep an hour earlier than his bed time. That’s how tired he was.
I felt bad. I even went
to bed an hour early that night. Going
to bed early was surprisingly refreshing the next day. I felt so sprightly at work, a hop in the
step, a quickness in the mind. Boy,
sleep really does affect moods. If it affected
me like that, how must it affect a child?
Well, my son must have had quickness in the mind as well
that morning. Somewhere at mid morning,
I get an email from my wife:
Subject: Kind of Funny
Matthew started waking up around 6:30 but I left him in the
crib till 7:45. While still in the crib
he started saying CACA then DADA. Was he
saying that daddy is shit because of last night? LOL.
Oh yeah. That’s
Oh have a sense of humor!!!
OK, daddy is caca. ;)
Ok, two pictures to share.
The first is at one of our nightly rituals, Matthew brushing his
teeth. He’s standing on the bathroom
counter while I photographing into the mirror.
And Matthew sleeping with his little Foxy near by.