There are traits we want our children to inherit, and there are others that make us want to bang our heads against the wall. Yev and I love seeing intelligence in our children’s eyes and tenacity in their actions. Their mischievousness though, that’s a struggle! Yev laughs it off and often mutters something about, “Karma,” but I’m like, “Karma?! Karma for who? I’m the one who spends 7 days a week with their hooligan antics, and I never got into trouble in my life!” In these instances, Yev likes to remind me that he rarely got into trouble either. In turn, I remind him that although he didn’t get caught, he was still doing bad things. Our conversation usually ends here. Yev with a jolly grin, and me with a furrowed brow.
One of the girls’ recently inherited traits is almost as frustrating as their rascal ways. Yev is meticulous about having clean hands and faces while eating. For an adult, I understand this. For a child, I find it impractical. For toddler twins, I find this impossible. However, Yev has managed to instill a sense of unrealistic cleanliness in our children, when they simply do not have the motor skills or body awareness to enforce these expectations. So let me tell you what this looks like.
I’ll sit the girls down, put their plates down, look for some clean silverware, grab some cups etc etc. Before I’ve even finished setting the girls up, R hollers at me like I’m across the house, “I need towel!”
“Calm down honey! Give me like two seconds.”
“Oh. I need towel! Clean up!”
By this point, even L is chiming in, “Towel! Towel!”
So I huff over with paper towels (we’ve never been much of a napkin family), and place them on the table. R hops off her chair and begins to wipe the seat off, “Oh! I need clean up!”
I finally get her settled back in her chair, but L has hopped off to clean her chair as well.
“Ok, everyone back in their chairs now and sit down on your bottoms!”
Then we’re good for a couple of minutes before R hops down again, “Oh! I need clean up!”
Then someone spills water on herself and wants to take all of her clothes off. Then they’ve become wet and messy and even more determined to clean up. They won’t sit in their chairs if they’re dirty or wet, and yet they’re not dexterous enough to keep themselves clean or dry.
We repeat this cycle over and over and over. Not to mention how many times they try to get more paper towels, so they can keep cleaning their hands and faces. Whenever I get up to grab more paper towels, the girls always take this as a opportunity to regroup and unleash hell. Oh mom has her back turned for a second, let’s hide under the table. Or better yet, let’s stand on the table and knock everything over.
It’s amazing what a child can get into in the 0.35 seconds while you have your back turned. So when I’m alone, it makes their cleaning techniques that much more frustrating. At least when Yev’s at the table, I get to glare at him while my eyes say, “You know this is your fault, right?” There’s something about having the recipient of my anger right in front of me that makes the experience that much more bearable 😈.