Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Four: It's the New Two

You know, the Terrible Twos really didn't live up to the hype. Sure, Sawyer had his moments, but overall, it was more like the Tolerable Twos. Everybody said 3 was worse. And in many ways, it was.

Sawyer became more independent. More feisty. But we worked on different discipline techniques (for me, that is) and really, it wasn't awful. Okay, at times I contemplated selling him on eBay, in EUC, but I didn't want to mess up our perfect feedback.

No one ever said anything about four. Because if they had, we would've just skipped over it entirely and moved right on to five.

I ran into two moms friends today in Target (you have no idea how unusual this is, as I really don't know many people in the area other than my neighbors. Most of my mom friends don't live all that close, and usually I can get away with wearing tall Uggs with Nike capri running pants because I'm in my cone of anonymity).

The first woman has twin boys who take swimming lessons the same time as Sawyer. They're a week older than him. After chatting for a bit, I decided I had to find out if my child was possessed or if by some wild chance her chldren were similarily afflicted. So I asked her whether her boys answered every request or command with "WHY?!?!"

"YES!!" she practically shrieked.

We commiserated through the checkout: Go wash your hands. Why? Stop kicking me. Why? Take your head out of the oven. Why? And so on. This is not the "why?" of curiousity. It's the "why?" of, "Look, Lady, you can go F yourself, because I DON'T SEE ANYTHING WRONG WITH JUMPING OFF THE TABLE ONTO MY SISTER WHEN I HAVE SCISSORS IN MY HAND!"

We said our goodbyes, and off I went to the parking lot, where I ran into my friend K. Her son is also a week older than Sawyer. And guess what? He's got a bad case of the Ferocious Fours, too!

My brain was simultaneously doing the Happy Dance and slowly oozing out of my ears.

Because my kid is normal! But it's not an enjoyable normal, like when they sit up on their own in the accepted timeframe. This particular phase might end with Sawyer's butt making a permantant indentation mark on the floor where he does his timeouts.

David actually uttered these words last night: "Sawyer, when Mommy's head starts spinning around like that, you need to run as fast as you can."

Ha. Wait til it pops off my neck and starts chasing him around the room.

I am hoping that this is just a phase. A short-lived one.

Or else we might be heading for the Felonious Fives.

Then there's Sage, who is clearly advanced for her age of 2 1/2. Just today we drove by a McDonalds on the way to get Sawyer from preschool, where, for three hours, he's someone's else's problem.

"Mommy! I want Chicken Nuggets."

"Not today."



Marcy - The Glamorous Life! said...

Yes- fours are a whole new kind of challengeing....but they are fun too. By the time they are 5 they seem WAY WAY old. Like a real kid- and it is kinda sad.....you'll see- trust me. Some day you will be wishing your kid was 4 again!

Hang tough. Oh- and when he says 'Why is the sky blue"...say 'Why?' after you ask him to wash hands (or whatever) Just stump him and say 'why do YOU think I want you to wash your hands?"...really confuses the little guys...good luck

Mely said...

Yeap...and sorry but for some kids like my Zoulanche it never ends!...she is 9 and she still has those why??? and the why not!!...so hang in there if you are lucky he might grow out of it soon :-)!!!

Melissa said...

Yes, yes, yes, the terrible fours (AND twos) are in full-force around here too. I have been so angry and stressed out over the last month, that my eye started twitching (something that hasn't happened since I had my stressful retail store job.)

So, two weeks ago I went into full teacher mode. I sat my kids down on the carpet and created a list of rules with them. I did the total teacher thing of making them think that they made up the rules I had already created. And, we used pictures instead of words to represent them on a chart. (Since they can't read yet.) Twice a day, if they follow the rules, they get a sticker on a chart. They are working to earn Speed Racer cars.

Guess what... It's been working!! Both kids have been kinder and nicer to me AND each other. Best of all, my eye hasn't twitched in over a week! :-)

Dawn said...

Grrrrr. I have 2 of them doing this...because it doesn't stop at 4...my 5 1/2 year old throws out the whys along with her little sis.

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