Tuesday, July 2, 2013


You know when the honeymoon ends.  He starts leaving wet towels on the bed, you stop shaving your legs with any regularity.  You hate to see it happen, but it happens nonetheless.  Then, you think maybe it's OK that it happens.  Maybe this means everyone can RELAX a little, let it all hang out, so to speak.

Well, the honeymoon ends in adoption, too.  And Rosie's just did.

Oh, yeah look at me so cute.  But I'm a punk.  Your typical toddler PUNK.
When R first came home, there wasn't much "testing" of boundaries going on.  "Come to dinner!"  She came.  "No!  Stop that!"  She stopped.  "Here's your breakfast."  She ate it all up.  Sure, she'd disobey a little here and there, but nothing major.  Big sis steps in and grabs a toy away?  No problem, R just looks a little dejected and moves on to something else.  Not anymore.

Gradually over the past week, R has started tantruming more.  When the Early Intervention staff asked me today how long her mega-tantrum went on this Sunday, I said, "All day?  Can a tantrum last all day?  Or, maybe not one big tantrum because she had to breathe and eat, but maybe several medium-sized tantrums that sort of melded into one?"

For the past few days, when I put a meal down in front of her, she takes a look at it, takes the bowl off her tray and places it back up on the table, and proclaims, "All done!!!"  So happy with her new words as she points to the cabinet where she knows the dessert is kept.  Eventually, she eats the meal (and sometimes the food off of E's plate, too) but it's on her own terms after she's tried to bargain her way out of it.

When E takes something from her and says, "MINE!", R engages in a ridiculous tennis match of "MINE!  No, MINE!  No, MINE!  No, MINE!" that will go on forever if I don't stop it.

Come to dinner?  "NO!"  Not until she has a temper tantrum and is ready.  Put on your bib?  "NO!" And a meltdown.  Time for nap?  "NO NO NO!"  Screaming fit ensues.

So, what *is* this!?!?!  Who came and switched our relatively docile R for the petulant one?  Well, it's just the end of the honeymoon.  R is settling in, and realizing that if she does something bad, we still love her.  She knows if she refuses a meal, there will still be more food.  In other words, she's being a toddler because that's what she is.  This is what kids do.  They are fussy about food, they think everything is "theirs", they throw tantrums when things don't go their way.  They say "NO" just for the hell of it.

In some odd sick and twisted way, we're happy to see this.  We're happy that R doesn't feel as if she needs to be on her best behavior at all times or we'll stop loving her.  Sure, our house is way more tumultuous now, but what exactly did we EXPECT by having a 2 year old and a 3 year old?  Peace?  Harmony?  Sharing?  No conflict?  Um, no. And if we did, then we should get our heads examined.

The bonus is that at the same time this is happening, R's increased comfort is also allowing her to open up her heart to us little by little.  Looking to us, calling out for me when she gets a boo-boo, running up to me and wrapping herself around my legs, and giving hugs.  So, yes, I think I've sprung another gray hair or two, but this is what should be happening as R continues to graft herself into our family.  She's letting it all hang out.  It's a new challenge, but it's a good thing.


likeschocolate said...

Yahoo! Hang on for the ride!

The Jiu Jiu said...

Congratulations (seriously!) on reaching the point of "normal" familyhood! Good job! :-)