"We don't crawl on the dining room table."
"We don't stand on the rolling ottoman."
"We don't talk in time out."
"We don't hit daddy with the drum mallet."
We we we we we we we. I have become the mother who uses the "we" in third person constantly. (Don't even get me started on my use of Mommy/Mama in third person.) Now that Lady Baby is in her terrible twos, she is constantly getting into no good. I feel like I say "We *fill in the blank with offense of your choice* don't do that" a million times a day. I don't think about saying it. It just rolls right off the tongue. Am I alone in this? Do all parents say it? I feel like I hear other moms saying it too, but it can't possibly be as often as I have to say it.
|My future digs.|
After driving myself to the point of needing a padded room (I think having a two year old is also a contributing factor) I took a few beats to analyze why this is my go-to phrase. Here are three different things I came up with.
1) Having a two year old is so stressful that it causes a person to disassociate themselves and start speaking in the third person. According to
2) Having a two year old is so stressful it causes split personalities in which case you begin to refer to yourself as "we." If you are having blackouts, people you don't know call you another name, or you wake up in the morning in booty clothes when you are almost certain you went to bed in flannel pajamas, then this one is for you. Much like number one, having a child who continually drives you to the point of insanity can break you. A house with a toddler is like Guantanamo, if the detainees were forced to serve their captors three meals a day, give them baths, and teach them their colors. It can cause a person to crack, people.
3) The third possibility is that I want Her Highness to understand the way decent folk act. And normally, whatever she is doing is NOT something decent folk do. Like eating dog food or coloring on the wall with a crayon. So I say to her, "we don't blahblahblah." Does it work, you are wondering? Eh. Sort of. It opens the door to a barrage of "why" questions, which is just another form of evil torture approved by the Toddlers against Parents Association. Not to mention that it is hard to explain exactly why we do or do not do things. She looked at me like I was crazy when I told her we don't flush the toilet 20 times in a row. She did not deem my explanation about America's overuse of water, and how we use more with a single flush than third world countries do in a day, an adequate reason to stop the magical fun that is the whirl of water around the bowl. Sometimes I have to break it down like this, "mommy and daddy don't stand on their chairs during dinner so neither can you." That seems to be an explanation that she understands, though she still throws the "why" dart in rebuttal on occasion. Whether she cares or not is a whole different story. And nine out ten times, she doesn't care. My hope is that I will continue to explain the way the people of the free world act in hopes that at some point Lady Baby will quit testing me every five seconds and just go with it. Doubtful.
Parents of the world fighting the good fight against your toddlers, hang on. Keep telling them what "we" do and don't do. Surely at some point they will stop being so offensive because they are sick of hearing the phrase. I am already sick of it and it has only been 6 months of explaining why we don't throw our plate when we are all done and why we don't hit our friends. If anyone has any better suggestions for cooperation with a two year old who thinks she is grown yet continually displays the behavior of a wild animal in a tiny cage, please email me. I can use all the help and advice I can get. Until then, I will fight the good fight of the "we" and try not to drive myself cuckoo birds in the process.
Note: The butter turkey has fought the good fight and gone on to a better place. I used it for the most honorable thing a butter turkey can become...white sauce. Thank you for your contribution to my tettrazini faithful butter turkey. (If you have no idea what I am talking about and/or are concerned that these are the ramblings of a crazed mother from her padded room click here. Then you too will understand and appreciate.)