The terrible twos, they are currently alive and kicking in the Capocci household in the form of my darling daughter Coco. When a relatively new friend told me that she found her daughter really hard work when she was approximately two and a half, I could of flung my arms around her and cried with sweet relief. Coco not only has her tantrums down pat, but she has now mastered the art of manipulation and quite frankly, torture inflicted in the form of pure frustration (on my part of course). At first I blamed the wave of constant change…my pregnancy, Raffy’s arrival, a holiday abroad/jet lag, new bed, playgroup etc…etc…But I have now come to the conclusion that it may just well be her personality. Fantastic for later life as I can rest easy knowing she won’t be walked over, but not so hot for the person right now who has to try and coax her to have a nap and forcibly remove the Smarties from her tight fisted little hands: me.
Over the last few months Coco has fine-tuned what I will fondly refer to as the “triggers of rage”. A few swift moves that will raise the blood pressure in minutes, and will leave a smug look of satisfaction across Coco’s gorgeous, crafty little face. Here are her top tips:
- LOOK AT ME!
If I had to make an educated guess at how often I hear this tiny little phrase in a day, I would have to say a one billion, gazillion. If you’re an auntie, uncle or friend of someone who has a young child, you may hear them say this as they perform a little dance or jig and think, how cute. Well imagine it for the thousandth time when you’re trying to drive on the M25, hush your baby to sleep or take a poo. It begins to get a little testing. When exercising, Coco was so aghast at the lack of attention she threw a stuffed toy at my personal trainer’s face (this was the first time they had met). The second time she poured a bottle of water over the PlayStation. Fun times
- THE HUMAN CLIMBING FRAME
Now before you mark me down as a miserable cow, I actually don’t mind a bit of rough and tumble and the human climbing frame can be quite good fun. But Coco’s knows full well that the best time to cause maximum impact in the meltdown stakes is just as I’m changing Raffy’s nappy – ideally a smelly one. Not only do I have to contend with the bloody baby trying to make an escape and not get crap on the carpet, but I also have to deal with a toddler climbing on my shoulders. Pure torture
- WHY? WHY? WHY?
A much-loved classic in the wind-up merchants back catalogue. Ask what we’re doing today and when you don’t like the answer, hit back with the, “But why? Why? Why?’ “Just bloody because!” The worst bit… you know they’re not even listening!
- BABY TALK
Psychologically, this one is understandable. Along comes Raffy who looks cute and gets lots of attention when he shouts loudly. So in Coco’s little mind, it makes perfect sense to do the same, and just like Raffy it could start without warning. In a supermarket, café, at the dinner table, you name it. The only thing I can guarantee, is that it’ll make no bloody sense and you’ll have a headache by the end of it
- SPECIAL MUMMY = DADDY
Now for a long time I have had to put up coming second place to Daddy. From roughly the age of one, Coco has had such a deep connection with her Dad that she used to cry when he dared leave her with me and go to the loo. He is the fun one, patient one and working one, so she gets to look forward to his return home. In comparison, I hang around like a bad smell that has just said no to a second ice cream. When I say I love you to Coco, she tells me, “ I love Daddy.” If she picks a flower, it’s ALWAYS for Daddy, and this week when helping her with her dinner she asked for her special mummy…you guessed it…Daddy.
Thankfully I have a mummy’s boy for kisses and cuddles, which means when I’m not tearing my hair out, I can actually stand back and admire her handy work. Coco’s a clever little sod and I wouldn’t change a single hair on her head, and as my own mother kindly points out, karma often has a funny way of biting you on the butt and I guess this is mine.
What does your toddler do to stress you out? I would love you to share your stories.