Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Three is More Terrible Than Two

I want to know who came up with the phrase "terrible twos."

I want to know so I can show up on that guy's doorstep with my 3-year-old and say Ta-da! Now come up with a phrase for THIS!

Sure, half the time 3-year-olds are these cute little munchkins with constant crumbs around their mouths, who put their shoes on backwards and can't pronounce their r's, but then, at the slightest provocation, they transform into tiny snarling, wailing creatures and their poor parents are left completely bewildered as to what set them off. It's like living with a miniature Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.

Let me paint a picture with a scene that happened at my house yesterday:
Dr. Jekyll: I want a grill cheese sammich and a ba-lana for lunch, pleeeeese.

Mommy: Ok, Sweetie, here is a grilled cheese sandwich and banana just for you!


Of course, two-year-olds sometimes throw irrational tantrums as well, but two-year-olds will be over the whole incident in about 2 minutes, while three-year-olds make like elephants and NEVER FORGET.

A few hours after the horrific Grilled Cheese Incident my three-year-old was back to his normal, silly self and was happily rummaging through our costume collection with his five-year-old brother. They looked so adorable in their mismatched superhero ensembles, I whipped out my phone to take a picture.

Mommy: Say cheese!

5-year-old: Cheese!


On his third birthday. I believe he is flashing the 3-year-old gang sign in this picture.
In order to be initiated, members must find ways to make their mothers cry before 10am. 

Being a three-year-old is rough. Besides the unexpected cheese in one's grilled cheese sandwich, there are many other distressing grievances that arise each day in a three-year-old's life which may prompt an appearance from tiny Mr. Hyde.

For example, here are some extremely devastating things that happened to my 3-year-old today:
-His graham cracker broke
-Christmas was not today
-The leaves on the ground were too crunchy
-His banana broke
-Mommy tried to join in the song he was singing
-He didn't get to press the button on the blender
-He wanted the granola bar in the blue wrapper, not the green wrapper
-No, actually he wanted the granola bar with the little man on it that is on the shelf at the grocery store
-He had to settle for the granola bar in the blue wrapper
-It broke

There were no sharks in his book about butterflies. 

You see, the world can be a very cruel place to three-year-olds. And by world I mean Mommy. And by place I mean Mommy. Mommy can be a very cruel Mommy to 3-year-olds. All the injustices are the fault of Mommy. The three-year-old motto might as well be "When life hands you lemons, throw them at Mommy."

The difference between three-year-olds and younger toddlers basically boils down to this:
Two-year-olds color on the walls because PRETTY!
Three-year-olds color on the walls because REVENGE!!!! You had it coming, Mommy! I can't believe you let my granola bar break!!

When my oldest was three he locked me out of the house so he could eat an entire bag of gummy bears. He wolfed down handfuls of candy, glaring triumphantly at me as I angrily pounded on the window. It was only after the empty bag lay crumpled on the floor that he opened the door and said, "But Mommy, I was SO HUNGWY!" You see, I had just served him a "wusgusting" lunch of grapes and a crustless turkey sandwich, which he refused to even taste. Eating the bag of gummy bears was necessary to ward of impending starvation. And, bonus, it really ticked Mommy off.

But don't worry, fellow parents of "threenagers," there are some perks to having a three-year-old. For instance, they are a lot more independent.

They are now able to dress themselves. Unfortunately, they have very specific opinions about fashion and usually end up looking like an escaped mental patient.

Henry decided to go with an animal-themed outfit at the library. Mrs. Frizzle would be proud.
At three they are now potty-trained or in the process of being potty-trained. Or at least they are currently rejecting all attempts at potty training, no matter the amount of cajoling, threats or bribery from desperate parents (can you guess which camp we are in right now?). Anyway, potty-training is great because changing diapers is the worst. It's so much easier to constantly ask them every 15 minutes "do you have to pee-pee?" and they always say "no, I just dancing!" and then 2 minutes later there is a giant puddle soaking into the very expensive sofa. So great. And in case anyone is having difficulty interpreting my tone, allow me to NOTE MY SARCASM.

Three-year-olds also insist on doing everything themselves, from pouring their own cereal to zipping their own coats. This almost never takes an eternity or ends in disaster. ALSO SARCASM.

So, three-year-olds may be more independent, but you might never make it out of the house.

And just when you think you cannot take anymore of the meltdowns and the messes and the 30-minute coat zipping marathons, somehow they always find a way to remind us how much we love them. The little stinkers.

Tonight we went out to dinner and Henry took it upon himself to introduce the waitress to our family, "...and dis is my brudder Jack and dis is my sister Baby." Then he gestured to me. "And dis is my best friend Mommy."

Drip, drip. What is that sound? Oh, that would be my heart melting into giant puddle.

Ah well, I guess I'll let Henry Hyde stick around for a few more months.

But I'm hiding the granola bars until he turns 4.


  1. Bahahahahaha I so remember our 3s being exactly the same. However, I think this also a total middle child thing too. 😀 this season will be over in 2.5 years.

  2. My mom always said the even numbers were even keeled. The odd numbers were... Well... Odd.