If you are expecting a baby girl or have one who is still blissfully pre-adolescent, I apologize now because I’m about to blow the top off your dreams of having ‘sugar and spice’ in your home.
Sally has PMS. Seriously, that’s the only explanation. She’s a junior high brain trapped in a 3-year-old body. Let’s start with the obvious symptom. She’s craving chocolate like nobody’s business. I know, your kid likes chocolate, too. Not like this. This is heroin addict, grab-your-mom-by-the-shoulders, look-into-her-eyes and growl “I neeeed something chocolaty” craving.
Also, everything I say is idiotic. This may in fact be true, but until recently she didn’t care. Now she often looks at me with that special “That is the dumbest thing I’ve ever heard. Who put you in charge?” look only a daughter can give. I have to really watch myself when we’re driving home from daycare. Sometimes she’s simply too angsty to talk about her day. I ask if they read any fun books about transportation (the current theme) and she’s all, “GAWH, Mom, I dunno, I guess, whatever! Leave me alone, I’m texting!”
Okay that’s an exaggeration, but you get the idea. Her physical appearance has also become an issue. At 18 months I started offering two outfits each morning and letting her pick (a brilliant tactic I learned from other moms and that saved hours of argument with a human that spoke in 3-word sentences), but now it’s all about the Beautiful Factor. “But Mommy, this is not beautiful. I need to look beautiful.” Shoes are scrutinized for sparkle quality and for their ability to contribute to an ensemble. I’ll probably go ahead and take her to see Sex and the City 2.
And the hair. Ever since she’s had enough of it, she’s wanted one–and only one–style. One barrette, on the right side of her head. I’ve been longing for more, since a significant part of my childhood was spent either in pink spongy curlers or with my mother putting my hair into loop braids. This is a classic case of needing to be careful what I wish for. Four days ago I spent the better part of my morning figuring out what hairstyle Sally was trying to describe to me. Turned out she wanted a bow to levitate over her head. I figured out how (because I am Mother, hear me roar) and everything was fine, but sheesh.
And finally, the drama. One day she’s telling me how nobody believed she could save the planet, and how awful they all are because clearly she can. Another day she’s relaying all the arguments about who is best friends with whom. The next day she’s near tears because someone else likes her favorite color. Then she’s elated because she is going to master the game of baseball, become an astronaut and have babies–all by age 7. Next, a fight over whose bicycle is bigger nearly comes to blows. I was tragically unprepared to hit this catty girl stuff so early. But maybe all this drama means she’ll be an easy real teenager? . . . No? Figures.
Oh good, my copy of Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret just arrived. Sally will be so excited.