Saturday, May 29, 2010

Van Gogh and Friends.

Ok, so I know that a two year old's intention is to discover her world.
I know that she does not mean to defy, irritate and manipulate me.
That in fact those are adult actions and emotions that she does not have the capacity for (yet.)

I also know that it is her developmental right to test boundaries and that
her most earnest desire is to please me and show me her skills.

So if I know all of this - why is my blood pressure raised?

I remember being confused as a kid when I got into trouble for something I had done so innocently.
My clearest memory of this was when I hung my mum's beloved necklace between two points to make a swing.
When it snapped and the beads scattered far and wide - some rolling into the heating vent, my initial reaction was disappointment that my pretty swing didn't work.
I ran off to report my failed experiment.
It simply didn't occur to me that the necklace was not a good choice.

My parents barraged me with questions.
Why would I do something so thoughtless?
Why would I break something on purpose?
What was I thinking?

I was thinking that I could make a swing with rope but this would be so much cuter.
I had no understanding of chain strength to weight ratio at age six.
I was so shocked at their response that I carry the weight of their disappointment with me now - decades later.

So with all of that understanding and knowledge why am I still fuming that the two year old has drawn all over the walls?
It's substantial and not even in a pretty color or design.
If you're going to vandalize my walls at least make it worth looking at.
I know she's two but she has done some much better art work.

I give myself a time out - to calm down.
Remind her sweetly that we draw on paper and give her a scrub sponge to undo her work.
I know I am being a good parent but really it would be so much more satisfying to tantrum.

Oh and Yes - that is the aforementioned SOUP!


  1. Nothing wrong with a good mommy tantrum. Have at it.

  2. p.s. I hope you gave her a bottle of vinegar-water and let her do the mirrors too...

  3. Oh, this took me back! My eldest never once drew on the walls - never considered it. My youngest drew on the walls with everything he could grab, in every room, for about a year and a half. I threw a huge tantrum at the beginning, but then I just bought the gallon-sized bucket of KILZ and waited him out. Now that he's eleven I kind of wish I'd saved a spot or two . . .


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