Our youngest daughter is Alexandra. She is 4.
She's super cute, very energetic, and all around great. See?
Also, from the moment I found out I was pregnant with Alexandra, she has been a handful: some early pregnancy problems, a frightening birth and many day hospital stay after she was born, rolling over before she was 3 months old, crawling at 5 months, walking at 9 months..........you get the picture.
As per the typical kid development, she started the "terrible twos" right on schedule - at about 18 months. And fantastic news: she's still there! Not all the time, but boy oh boy, does she have her moments!
Take the other day for example: we went to church, then to Grandma's to visist. We returned home in the early afternoon, and Alexandra happily went upstairs and quietly and independently played with a bunch of mini plastic animals for about 45 minutes. Then she was done, and she went downstairs. And she left all the animals laying all over the floor.
Like the horrible mommy I am, I found her and said "Alexandra, are you done playing with the animals?" Her reply was "Yes". So I said "Can you please go upstairs and put them away?".
She ran off and I heard her feet going up the stairs, so I naively thought she was happily putting the animals away.
I know. I'm not the sharpest tool in the shed sometimes.
A very short while later, Elizabeth walks up to me and says "Mommy, Alexandra is upstairs and she's mad because she has to pick up her toys and she's saying "stupid, stupid Mommy" ".
OK, so maybe she wasn't happily putting the animals away after all.
After telling Elizabeth that she should stay downstairs - I could deal with Alexandra by myself, thank you - I went upstairs to talk to my little girl. I found her laying on her bed with her face buried in her pillow. I guess she knew she had done something she wasn't supposed to do. Well....that's good, right?
I sat down and explained to her that 1) I knew it was hard sometimes to have to do things you didn't feel like doing, but that's how things worked; 2) I knew that she was mad and it was hard to know how to act when she was mad, but 3) it was NOT acceptable to talk about me, or anyone else, like that. We do not call people stupid. Ever. Then I told her that she needed to pick up her animals, and when she was done with that, she had to have a time out for a while.
Sometimes I feel sorry for her - I mean, she's the youngest person in our house, she has an older sister who pretty much bosses her around all the time, and man, her parents are mean - making her pick up her toys and stuff! But sometimes......well, sometimes she just pushes those buttons! I vaguely remember Elizabeth having troubles when she was four, too, so it's probably a developmental things, but see that I said "vaguely"....I can barely remember what I ate yesterday, so remembering anything almost 4 years ago? Forget it.
All I can say is that I sure hope life isn't as hard when you're 5!