Help

October is here. It’s finally fall and sweater weather for real. Softball is over and basketball has not yet officially started. Life is so, so goshdang good.

Things I’ve been doing with all the time I’ve got this year since dropping out of all volunteer activities:

  • Holding the baby
  • Feeding the baby
  • Cuddling the baby
  • Singing to the baby
  • Trying to make the baby laugh
  • Trying to be consistent with Arbor who is obviously dealing with the most intense 10th level of world-class little-sister envy.
  • Seriously it’s bad.


Lucy is the easiest baby I’ve ever had, but Arbor is acting out like nothing I’ve ever seen. Allegedly, her mother was a complete spaz at three years of age, but the only person who can back that up is my mom, and don’t nobody need to hear that full story anyway. WHATEVER.

Point is, at the end of the day, everyone in our house is OVER Arbor’s antics. This situation is new to me. Lucy is sleeping through the night, but I find myself mentally exhausted from dealing with Arbor’s tantrums from sun-up to sun-down. Screaming, shouting, screeching, whining, thrashing, kicking, fussing, hitting, throwing…gang’s all here, 12/7. (EXCEPT IN PUBLIC, OF COURSE.)


Turns out, I’m only boss at parenting when kids are naturally chill and well-behaved. With Arbor, I’m truly at a loss. This girl has me almost in tears by the end of the day most days–it’s worse when Merrick and Mia are home; which, to me, signals a cry for attention. At this point my focus is damage control.


Mia: “Mom, Arbor is threatening to hit me.”

Me, with my hands full of baby and cooking dinner: “But did she actually hit you?”

Or this conversation I had with Arbor the night Caleb went on a date for the first time since…um….March.

Me: “Daddy and I are going on a date tonight.”

Arbor, (screaming): “I wanna go too!”

Me: “No, only mommies and daddies go on this date. So we can drink coffee and kiss.”

Arbor (screaming): “Mom, that’s disgusting! Only I kiss daddy!”

Me: “Well, I–”

Arbor (calmly): “Fine. But I need a pink watch and some candy.”

Me: *ACTUALLY SITS THERE AND CONSIDERS HER SEEMINGLY REASONABLE REQUEST AND ALMOST AGREES TO IT UNTIL I WAKE UP AND REALIZE THIS THREE-YEAR-OLD IS ABOUT TO BEST ME IN A BATTLE OF WITS* “No, sweetheart. You will stay home tonight with Miss Stephanie.”

Arbor (screaming): “Miss Stephanie? I LOVE HER!!!”

Don’t get me wrong–Arbor’s just as sweet as she is sour, and I do a lot of marveling at her creativity and intelligence just like I do with my other kids. I love her so fiercely, but PLEASE GIVE ME ALL THE ADVICE.

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About Toni

Mom. Wife. Artist. I take care of the kids and pretend to clean sometimes. I can cook spagetti and I have never been arrested. View all posts by Toni

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