I knew it was only a matter of time before I would have to face creative fecal expression from my progeny.
My two and half year old toddler has been toilet trained for nearly a year now, but last week he got the runs and we endured kakastrophe… which kakastrophe continued until a few days ago. I’m not sure what it what was that unsettled his stomach so, but if he wasn’t near a toilet within the minute, kakastrophe ensued. Last Saturday, he was banging on his door clamoring for our aid to the potty and before we could get there, he had managed to write what appeared a frenzied SOS message on his wall and door using the very material of his pernicious predicament.
Apart from our frazzled fecal misadventures, we’ve faced a mutiny over sleeping arrangements which has resulted in an insomniac version of musical chairs in which my husband and I have recursively moved from our bed (colonized by M), to the couch, to L’s bed with nary two winks of sleep. We’ve analyzed L’s regression as his realization that he was getting the short end of the stick, noting that M refused to inhabit his crib for some time and that we've pandered to his every cry. L, offended at this unequal treatment, with arms outstretched and booming voice, stood on his bed and proclaimed his right to the fraternal share of parental cuddling as if a sans-culotte in a Delacroix painting. Our regime crumbled against his rebellion, resulting in less sleep for all concerned with L waking up in the middle of the night to ensure that one parent was on sentry in his bed, awaiting cuddle duty.
Yesterday we decided it was time to employ counter-revolutionary methods of donning headphones, re-establishing a line of sight in his room and refusing to abandon our posts in the living room. As L protested at the door, we implored each other not to give in. In the end, he fell asleep alone and didn’t wake up during the night. Mission accomplished.
However, we still have the infant intifada in full bloom. His crib remains empty and he continues to hold dominion over our bed and demand regular nursing sessions. We’ve come to the realization that le petit caporal will not stop his imperial stampede. Our Waterloo will not come until we (and while I use the collective form, it is admittedly really me who has been weak and succumbed to the cry that has decapitated my resolve and pierced me with guilt with the mechanical accuracy of the guillotine) resist his repeated rebellions and leave him to his tears. It’s a step by step process of coming in ever so often and assuring him of our presence and concomitantly, of our resolve (which means that The Milk must remove itself and the Paternal Praetorian Guard must deal with the incessant incursions).
It’s nearly a year since M entered this world in a frenzy that is suitable to his forceful and somewhat tempestuous character. I have resolved that before he reaches one (in just a couple of weeks), he begins to sleep through the night. I’ve also resolved that I will discontinue being milkmaid to our toddler who can contend with the bovine variety. Oh, to regain dominion over my bed and body once more! It shall be glorious.