A flashback that proves that we've made no progress at all

My oldest child has been very challenging lately. I don't have the energy to get in to it, but my frustration level is very high. (And I keep wondering what I've done wrong, as her mother -- do all mothers wonder this? I think it's probably just her, but that doesn't stop me from feeling guilty.)

Anyway, today I re-discovered a kind of journal I'd kept before I started this blog, about Mallory's younger years. And I found this conversation we had, when she was about two and a half, which made me laugh. And it could be that laughter is all that's going to get us through adolescence. Anyway, here it is:

Yesterday evening I was very tired; I lay down on my bed and was watching TV while Mallory read books in her room. She came in after a while and asked for pudding. I said no, it was almost dinner time. She asked for a cookie. No. Candy. No. A popsicle. No. A banana? I said, "Okay, in five minutes we'll go downstairs and you can have a banana." She agreed. But then she kept saying, over and over, "I want a banana. I want a banana. I want a banana. Mommy, can I have a banana?" Finally, grumpily, I yelled, "Mallory, if you say banana one more time you're not getting one!"

Then I realized how dumb that sounded--what, I'm going to withhold fruit from the child? So we went downstairs, I gave her the banana, she ate two bites and threw the rest away. I went to her and said, "I'm sorry that I yelled at you earlier. I was frustrated because you were asking the same questions over and over, but I shouldn't have yelled." She said, "You yelled at me?" Yes. "What day was it?" Today. "But what TIME was it?" Around 7. "But what DAY did you yell at me?" Today. Thursday. "Not Tuesday?" No, today. "But what time did you yell at me?" Just a few minutes ago. "Was I sad?" At which point I wanted to yell, again: "Just forget it! I'm not sorry! You're driving me mad!"

The more things change, indeed.


Chris said...

It's not you, it's her pretty much...and I'd love to tell you this will all be over soon, but dealing with teenagers every day I hate to break it to you, but it's going to get much worse before it gets better.

aimee said...

You are a great mom! And keep laughing. That way you won't cry. Haha