6 November 2014

This sibling love thing is NOT working out for Mama

If I didn't have full confidence in the extremely good nature of my four year old Tully, I'd be pretty convinced at the moment my daughters are trying to get me publicly named and shamed as "Meanest Mum Ever".

Imagine that you're doing the patient but firm piece on your 2.5 year old at the shopping centre.  For the purposes of this post, we'll call this small person, Cassidy.  She's a cheeky, feisty little thing, far more articulate than many of the same age and with an attitude that Lilly Allen would envy.  She is fierce about her independence but does absolutely prefer to be carried about rather than walk.

So here I am. I am telling her she has to walk. That she is big enough to hold my hand and use those two very adorable legs to propel herself in a forward motion. She disagrees. She's throwing herself across my feet with the same determination Emily Davison stepped in front of the Kings Horse at Epsom Derby in 1913.

I get down low, look her in the eye and say to her "Cassidy. No. You are walking".

Then I get up and take a few steps forward congratulating myself on having made myself clear as she is no longer crying.  I turn to be encouraging and there is Tully, staggering along carrying her little sister in her arms, saying things soothingly such as "There, there little one, I'll carry you, it's okay, don't be sad".

It's okay Mum. Sigh
And where there was nobody, there is now a large assortment of ladies who probably went to school with Emily Davison herself gathered about watching Tully lurching along with Cassidy clinging to her as if her life depended on it, and yelling out "It's okay Mum, I'll carry her for you".

I make some kind of comment that sounds lame even as I utter it, make Tully put Cassidy down and move away with two wailing children.  One that wants to be carried and one that wants to be helpful.

Go to another day, Tully is sitting in the trolley waiting patiently while I crouch down next to Cassidy who is demonstrating her capacity to be sad.  Very very sad apparently. Which is actually a fully blown tantrum because I have given her two options - walk or trolley - and she wants to be carried.

Down at her level I acknowledge verbally that I know she wants to be carried but that I have said 'No' and I definitely can't change my mind now that she's throwing a tantrum and so on and so forth and blah blah.  I feel the look, glance up and am surrounded by a posse of cane toting venerably aged women asking in that deceptively calm way "All okay dear?"

Cassidy's wails move up a notch to "Oh an audience, how delightful."

Before I have a chance to say anything Tully breaks of the soothing sounds she's making to her sister and pipes up with "Mummy's making Cassidy sad again but it's okay, she's okay, aren't you little one?"

Cheeses Tully.  Really? Could you have made me sound ANY more in need of reporting to DOCS?

I explain what's going on and we all smile and they move off, but not before one of them stars so hard at me she'll be able to describe me to the police without a single error including, as I discover when I get home, that I was only wearing eyeliner on one eye.
Butter wouldn't melt would it?
So now I am nervously awaiting the third strike and avoiding groups of aged citizens. I can't help but feel they are following me about waiting for yet another example of how I make small people cry and force other small people to act as pack horses in public places for my own deviant purposes whereas they will trip me with their canes and pin me to the floor until the police arrive.

What about you? Has the bond between your offspring portrayed you in a less than flattering light recently?

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