Guess what? We have praying mantis babies! Creepy?
In other news, Oliver has denounced me as the preferred parent. As proof, he spent the majority of yesterday telling me, “Mama, I don’t yike you. I yike Papa,” amidst a beautiful and delightful trip to the zoo during which I carried the villain on my back in the Ergo carrier while feeding him animal crackers and pushing the baby in the stroller and attempting to keep track of Milo as he darted ahead. After hugs and smooches and kind words, he would remind me. “Mama, I stiw don’t yike you.”
After picking him up and kissing his scraped knees after the fifth fall-down of the day, he hugged me and said, between heaving sobs, “YOU are NOT the best, Mama! I stiw don’t yike yoooooooouuuuuu!” But he still held my hand while we walked the rest of the way to the playground until Andrew was in his sights again and all was right with the world. Sigh.
I remember Milo pulling this treatment with Andrew at the exact same age and I thought it was hilarious. And now that Oliver is shunning me, I can totally handle it and be objective and realize that it is a normal stage of development, yada, yada, yada. Only, it kind of sucks to not be the favorite.
And yes, Milo went through his mean phase too, ensuing all sorts of hilarity and giggle-fits with the creative ways he would express his aggression toward us parents. Oliver is more tame with his insults, coining such phrases as “I’m gonna squirt you in the EYE!” and “STUPE!” (as he is not allowed to say “stupid,” he has shortened it in order to avoid a time-out but still get his point across- it’s surprisingly effective. You should really try it the next time you’re in an argument with your boss or spouse or two-year-old). But he often accompanies his tirades with blunt physical acts to enhance the anger, such as stomping one foot or slapping the wall. Oh, and he also likes to just yell “YAH!” “YAH!” “YAH!” very loud in your direction. Deafening and also quite effective.
And I know this phase will pass, as each phase does. So I’ll be here waiting with a hug and a kiss and an “I love you too” as soon as he’s ready to have it.
Also, here is the last time Oliver kicked my ass.