My parents lied to me.
My siblings and I would often lure my parents with, “Who is your favorite child?” They’d both respond, “We don’t have a favorite! We like you all the same!”
(Maybe that was code for, “Not you.”)
I loooove my kids both equally, and it’s a smothering, obsessive, endless, completely unconditional love; however, as a mother of a two and three year old, my level of fondness per child correlates with the level/volume of whining per child.
Of course, I’m not TELLING them that, but I hope they can read between the lines. Like, I’ll ALWAYS be obsessed with you, kids, but he who whines the least will get away with the most, you get me? I’m tired. I’ll pick my battles. I’ll overlook you sneaking a few bites of ice cream before 9am.
Shoot, I’ll even just Instagram story my child that drew on the bathtub with my only Chanel lipstick if he’s been nice.
The other one, though? The one who has been kicking on the floor all morning? The one who unloaded his dresser during the one minute he was sent to his room?
You’re going to make me break my Botox, sweetheart.
This whole concept was reiterated this morning. I was lying in bed with a headache, and Roscoe woke up earlier than normal. He plowed through the morning in full I AM TWO fashion: he yelled at me for juice, yelled at me for cereal, and then he yelled at me because I poured the wrong cereal. I also turned on the wrong episode of his favorite cartoon…I faced the music for that. His shrill whining continued when I tried to sneak back in bed instead of watch Blaze with him (which I’ve made very clear is NOT my favorite show of his), and when I left anyway, he spent the next hour (literally, bad headache) sitting on my head, manually opening my eyes, crying, and occasionally throwing himself down on Brian’s pillow in an unrelenting rage only a two year old can muster.
So this is it, huh? Second child, but first stamp on my Terrible Twos passport.
My other little guy, Gus, slept in until 8:30, was happy to eat the stale Costco muffin left on the counter from the night before, and played with his cars. He came in to say good morning, grabbed my phone to pull up his playlist, and spent the rest of the morning dancing his little heart out in another room, pretending to surf to Beach Boys.
At that moment, I was guilty of having a favorite. It was the child not poking my pupils.
In that moment, I also realized that my mom probably didn’t like me from 2001-20…now?
Suddenly, mercifully, Roscoe flipped his two-year-old switch from sour to sweet. We snuggled at nap time. He fell asleep in my arms for the first time in over a year, and all his offenses of the morning faded away. I fell in love with that perfect little face and fluttery eyelashes all over again, and held my baby boy for much longer than necessary.
I can’t help but wonder if my children gravitate toward a parent they’re most partial to in the same, unsaid-but-can’t-blame-them way. Brian is way more fun than I am, so after his sports knowledge is factored in…ugh. I better work on my patience, or apply for a Target Redcard to buy their love with 5% off.
Rough day with this two-year-old little dude. I’m always grateful for the tomorrows of life.
(And just for the record, it was decided amongst my siblings years ago that my parents’ favorite child is Colby. We aren’t mad.)