Monday, July 28, 2008

I Have a Theory

Actually, it’s someone else’s theory that I read somewhere…I’m just not sure where.* I hope it’s true though. The idea behind it is that young children go through periods of equilibrium and disequilibrium. Equilibrium occurs around the half birthdays and disequilibrium occurs around the full birthdays. That would mean the Terrible Twos should take place from about 21 months to about 27 months and the Horrendous Threes should take place from 33 months to 39 months. The time in between, should be easier.

So far, Michael has fallen in line with starting the Terrible Twos at 21 months. He’s been pushing every button, testing every limit, and fighting every battle since that time. And boy, does he like to fight battles. You want to know what he’s been fighting about lately? Saying, “I love you.” I’m serious. I put him to bed and he says, “I love you.” I say it back. He then adds emphasis and says it again. You know, in that “I love you more than you love me” tone of voice. Just for fun, I decided to see how long he would keep it up. He will keep it up even as I’m walking out of the room. He must get the last word in.

I guess I shouldn’t be too surprised. I mean, he is Two. He also comes from a long line of very stubborn, debate loving, last word getting clan. How can I complain when I’m the same way?

But, something odd happened this weekend. He was a complete sweetie. I mean so sweet that he kept insisting on holding my hand. This from a child that DOES NOT HOLD HANDS. He also agreed to a diaper change when he was outside playing in Andy’s car. Not only did he agree, but he smiled as I carried him in and cooperated as I changed the diaper. In fact, he went so far this weekend as to try a new food! Seriously, I’m not making this up. We were at my sister in law’s house and he actually took a bite of tomato. When he went to spit it out, he grabbed my hand and spit it into my hand instead of dribbling it down his chest. (If I had said he had eaten it, no one would have believed this post.)

I did some math, and guess what? Yep, Michael is just about to hit the 27 month point. So, do you think there may be some truth behind the theory? Do you think Andy and I may be in for a few less battles over the next few months? I sure hope so. It was the most relaxing weekend we have had in, well, 6 months!

*If you know what it's from, let me know. I'd like to read more about it.

8 comments:

Maria said...

Joanna-
Let's hope the next 6 months are easier. I hear you about getting the last word in. Michael sounds like he is becoming such a sweet boy.

Karen said...

Same thing is happening here. I think it's due to his glasses ;)

DesiDVM said...

Joanna -- OMG please please please say there is some truth to this...J will be 27 months on Friday and like Michael he's been much easier to deal with for the past week or so.

LauraC said...

I know! I know!

It's from the series Your XX Year Old. I just finished "Your Two Year Old: Terrible or Tender." Moxie did a review of "Your Three Year Old: Friend or Enemy" and that's how I heard about the equilibrium / disequilibrium phases.

READ THE TWO YEAR OLD BOOK! It is great. It really helped me pinpoint which behaviors were normal and which were bratty things that would come back to haunt me.

Very dated, but based on real studies!

LauraC said...

Oh yeah, the book also helped us set limits... Nate does the same thing where he keeps stalling at bedtime. So I tell them they get 5 kisses and 5 hugs, then mommy and daddy are tired and need to go to bed. Nate starts yelling "Not tired! Not going to sleep!" if we tell them good night.

And the book also helped us with indecision... apparently they are hard-wired to be very confused by choices and they don't know what they want. That's why they say no all the time when they really mean yes.

Seriously, it was like opening a book and reading about my kid. They seem so unspecial now :)

Steph said...

Wow- he tried a new food???

I know the other stuff is important too, but wow, that's huge! I tried offering Cooper a tomato tonight- he would, as usual, have nothing to do with it.

I hope the theory is right- we're in a lull like you described now too. It's so sweet- Cooper will randomly hug me and is more cuddly than usual. I love it.

Heidi O said...

I may now have to go and find those books. It does make sense though. They do tend to behave better at those half birthdays. I guess I should revel in my son's still be in the half mode and just wait for Maggie to get there soon. Congrats on the new food trying.

Mama Mia said...

I hope your theory is true...for you and for the rest of us May 06 ladiesvzbcvvti