Hallie is two. Almost two and a quarter, actually, which is exactly how old Will was when he hit (pun intended) the first of two awful bouts of terrible two-ness. Hallie is following in her brother’s footsteps with regard to this stage, and is, quite frankly, pretty unpleasant to be around a lot of the time.
Hallie must do everything all by herself all the time. I pity the poor soul who offers a helping hand as she’s pulling on her shoes or trying – in vain and for 47 minutes – to buckle her car seat belt; hell hath no fury like a two-year-old helped.
When the fury takes over her tiny body (approximately 157 times each hour), watch out. Literally. Hallie scrunches up her face, squints her eyes, takes aim, and hits anything and anyone near her with the strength and precision of a child twice her size and age.
And when placed in timeout for hitting (again, approximately 157 times each hour), the combined pitch and volume of her screams make ears bleed and grown men cry.
And once she’s been set off, the screaming NEVER. EVER. STOPS. Tears streaming down her cheeks. Snot pouring from her nose. Kicking. Hitting.
To give you a better idea, here’s a snapshot of yesterday, a day I would call “average”:
- 30+ minute tantrum surrounding getting dressed (these days she will wear ONLY “piddy dwesses”), eating breakfast, brushing teeth, brushing hair, and putting on shoes.
- 15-minute tantrum, triggered by my accidentally touching her dress (YOU TOUCH-A MY DWESS!”), which she interpreted as me trying to help her, while she was climbing into her car seat.
- 20-minute tantrum, triggered by an oddly shaped animal cracker, during Will’s swimming lesson. Tantrum led to hitting, hitting led to timeout, timeout led to tantrum…which led to us nearly being kicked out the swimming pool spectator area.
- 10-minute tantrum, triggered by Will and I switching CDs in the car and track “numba sits” (number six) NOT being Animals by the Dalton Academy Warblers, in the car on the way home from swimming lessons.
- 40+ minute tantrum prior/during/after dinner, triggered by who-the-heck-knows-what, during which she laid face-down on the dining room floor underneath her chair.
- 15-minute tantrum in timeout after throwing Mickey Mouse at Daddy, Daddy taking Mickey Mouse away, and then hitting Daddy.
In the cup-is-half-full vein, I recall this stage only lasting about a month for Will.
In the cup-is-half-empty vein, I also recall that three-years-old was way worse than two-years-old. Heaven help me.