"I DO IT MYSELF!" (Or: The Beginning of the End)

The 6:18 a.m. tantrum, which we enjoy daily from Monday through Friday, has reached new heights. My "sweet little cupcake baked by the devil" has decided to dress herself. You'd think I'd be happy about this sort of progress (as in, "awww, she's growing up!"), but I'm not. Trust me, letting her dress herself will only lead to pure misery - for all of us, even the dogs. I remember my middle sister yelling, "I DO IT BY MESELF!" when she was a wee lass, and now her niece is following in her footsteps.

This morning, for the first few seconds after she awoke, we almost thought she was going to be in a good mood. Ha ha! I made a funny! Hoo, I kill myself sometimes.

It all started to go downhill when I tried to get her dressed and put a Pull-Up on her (this potty training stuff is still in its early stages so I didn't want to get all cocky and send her off to daycare in her Ariel underwear). "No, I do it!" Fine, be my guest. Then she wanted to put on her pants by herself. After five minutes of contortions and crying, they were on. Then came the shoes and socks (I had scored an early victory by slipping her shirt on before she was able to stage a protest). As her breakfast grew ever colder, she was on her back on the floor, red-faced, snot running, one cock-eyed sock partially stuck on her left foot. If she knew any obscenities, she would have shouted them. (She should know a few - she lives with me, after all. Now that I think about it, I'm pretty disappointed in her.) And then a minor triumph - the sock was on. The other foot, however, would not go down so easily. Finally, several minutes later, she was dressed. Or some close approximation - I don't know about you, but I'm sure not going to be the one to tell her when her gear is crooked. (Go ahead, tell her - I triple dog dare you.)

Just when we thought the battle was drawing to a close, she decided that she no longer needs help getting up into her booster seat. We watched her struggle for several minutes. She had her fingers hooked around the back of the chair, legs flailing behind her as she fought to get her knee up onto the plastic seat. We dared not offer our assistance. P and I looked at each other and shrugged. "Did we keep our receipt?" I asked him. "Maybe we could return her?"

Moments later, she was sitting happily in her booster seat, munching a Flintstones vitamin and chatting merrily with the dogs. When it was time for her to leave with her dad, she found me in the bathroom, kissed me on both cheeks, and gave me a hug. "She, um, swings like a pendulum, doesn't she?" He just nodded.


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