Thursday, October 21, 2010

Terrible, Terrible, Terrible

My baby turned 2 today. This breaks my heart a little, since she’s my last baby. My last little 2 year old.

That said, let me just add that Atleigh is the two-est 2 year old I’ve ever owned. Allow me to brag a little, if you please. My two oldest, while not exactly angelic, were pretty close, as 2 year olds go. For instance: I’ve never had to baby proof my house. That’s right. Never. I’m actually a firm believer in NON baby proofing. I think if you cover up and lock everything, it’s only going to make the child more prone to mess with whatever it is you’ve covered and/or locked. Neither Ashton nor Chloe ever tried to stick pennies in light sockets, play with cleaning products, strangle themselves in blinds, or bathe in the toilet. They never climbed on tables, colored on walls, unraveled toilet paper, threw World War 3 tantrums, or anything else that a standard 2 year old seems to do. If they ever did do something in that field, it only took once or twice before they learned not to. I suppose I was spoiled. I didn’t know any better. That’s just the way it was.

Whatever it was, outstanding parenting, angelic genius children, or sheer luck, it’s been more than repaid now. My day of reckoning has come. To say that Atleigh eclipses both of her siblings in the “Terrible Twos” category is a gross understatement. I don’t even know what to do with her. I’m bewildered. Not only has she accomplished all of the above examples of utmost Twodom, she has upped the ante and proved that 2 year olds the world over could be capable of so, so much more.
She has flushed Chloe’s socks down the toilet, gotten into my makeup drawer and used my concealer stick to color her entire body- her ENTIRE BODY- green, and emptied a whole bottle of baby shampoo onto her hair and tried to “wash” herself. She rips pages out of books. She colors on the walls, the furniture, and the appliances with red (why does it always have to be red?) marker and/or crayon. She climbs up onto the kitchen table to look in the snack box. One time she found a pack of mint gum in there and had taken bites out of every single piece of gum. With the wrappers still on. Then she spit the bites out all over the counter. I guess she doesn’t like mint. She has crammed DVD’s into Jeremy’s PS3 twice- TWICE!!!- and he’s had to take the thing completely apart to get them all out (thank God YouTube has a video for everything). She’s the only one of my children who has learned to wrangle her way out of her car seat straps while I’m driving.

Even just now, as I’m typing this, she came and sat on the kitchen floor with a pen and the book I’ve been reading. I said, “Atleigh, give that to Mommy please.” She tries to hand me the pen. I said, “No, Atleigh, the book. Let me have the book, please.” She stands up, takes 2 steps toward me with the book outstretched, then sits back down on the floor, and throws it to me instead. “Here ya goooo!” Why? You were already halfway to me! Just HAND me the book!!

And the tantrums! Don’t even get me started on the tantrums! I’ve never had to apologize to the general public over my child’s behavior! I’ve never had to bribe a child in the store with cookies or crackers just to get her to shut up. It’s not for my sake, or for hers. It’s just so she’ll SHUT. UP. It’s for everyone else’s sake. I know how annoying it is to listen to a baby scream through a whole grocery store.

I’ve called my mother in tears, wondering what is wrong with her. Does she have a learning disability? Is she a sociopath? Is she demon possessed? Every time, my mother’s answer has been: “No. She’s just two.”

With all this said, I’ve decided there’s an easier way to handle this situation. I’ve decided it’s time for me to stop making excuses to strangers, offering up an apologetic “I’m sorry. She’s two.” I’ve decided it’s time to let Atleigh speak for herself.

I'm thinking of ironing this onto every single piece of clothing she owns. Maybe I’ll market it to mothers of 2 year olds. Here are some variations on my idea:






And then I’m going to make a t-shirt for myself. And make myself wear it everyday as a reminder that I’m not a failure, and I’m not crazy:


(All slogans, concepts, and ideas were created by and are property of Mary Smoot.)


  1. Awesome! Happy Birthday to that sweet baby. Give her hugs & kisses from her great auntie and tell her how much I miss her & her hugs. You were just especially blessed with Ashton & Chloe and now - Atleigh is making up for all you have missed with having a 2 year old. I love you. And, I'm sure you've heard paybacks are a &*^%$.

  2. Lets not forget that she already HAD a package of Oreos and still needed to grab a thing of Rolo's off of the shelf and chew into them with her little teeth, leaving Uncle Ben with no choice but to buy them. I HATE ROLO'S! But seriously though, don't judge me, I smiled at just about this entire blog. It's pretty much adorable, frustrating as it is. Not to mention the pictures are precious. Love you Mary! Hang in there, you're an amazing mom. It'll pay off :)

  3. This is a great Post - and I didn't know that you didn't have the same with the older babies... We already have a time with Ian - he is doing alot of that and he isn't 2... LOL I am glad I found this blog now I can at least read what is going on in your life since we never see each other or talk anymore. It is refreshing to read! And I think you should alter the shirts for whatever age they are... I think you should make a few and keep them with you because when you take her to the store in that everybody is going to want one for their kid!!

    Later chick!

  4. I feel that I should add this, for the sake of Atleigh's reputation. She does not, in fact, ALWAYS color with red marker. Today she used blue.