No Bunny Battle

You know how they say to choose your battles?  I thought I got what that meant before but I didn’t.  Not until  Almost Two.  I’m sure the me in Anything But Thirteen will look back on Almost Two and laugh in her face.  For that matter, I’m sure Oh God Sixteen is getting ready to hook up in the back seat with the kid across the street’s Rock Me Steady Seventeen.  Almost Two is nothing, isn’t it?

Don’t worry Almost Two, I believe in you.

I have several moments a day when I have to remind myself to pick my battles.  I can tell you that I’m already doing better at this than I thought I would.  I have allowed all sorts of things that my wife probably wishes I wouldn’t.  And I frequently catch myself thinking, choose your battles.  Especially when RR is torn between making a fine film of peas over both eyelids and rhythmically kicking her cup of milk down the hall.  Enter the bunny.

Both D and I had things we were attached to as children, hers was a bear, mine a blanket (at least until my doctor recommended my mother cut it up and then it was a red velvet hat.  This says so much.)  RR has a bunny head on a flat piece of fabric.  She loves that thing more than I thought possible.  I’m pretty sure that she would take Bunny with her everywhere.  But there has been one rule and that is that Bunny Stays. In. The. Crib.

Because she has other things she’s attached to at school and in the car we’ve been able to keep Bunny from sowing his wild oats.  In exchange, I have let her jump on the bed, smear peaches all over her belly, wander barefoot through weeds and surf on the rocking chair.  But then her arms got long enough to fish Bunny out of the crib from any angle.  There may be one small pocket of refuge left, but I’m pretty sure that’s why she has started carrying around a yardstick.  Seriously.

Now I catch her gleefully racing down the hall, Bunny in hand, at all hours of the day.  She knows she’s walking on the wild side (this is RR’s most favorite place in the world next to thin ice).  I caught myself saying, “Put Bunny back in the crib.” more times than I could count.  I’ve tried to move to a place of patience, recognizing that Almost Two has no reason.  This is no battle I can win and really, there is no real reason why I should.  Yes, Bunny would stay cleaner and less lost if he were in the crib.  But being out of the crib isn’t doing any lasting damage especially since she’s stopped seeing it as a delightfully naughty experience.  Now when we tell her to put him away, off she goes.  Usually.  You can’t win ’em all.

In exchange, she sits at the table with us through dinner.  That’s a lot to ask and I get it.  I’d like to think she is learning to recognize the art of compromise.  However, it could just be that she’s waiting for the opportunity to whack her milk across the room with her yardstick.

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7 Responses

  1. We have Mr. Elly (an elephant head & arems sewed on a 1 foot square “blanket”), C loves him but he is only supposed to be for sleepy time. Lately, she has started clinging to him after waking. Usually after going downstairs she tosses him aside quickly in favor of pulling all of the pots and lids out of the cabinets!

  2. My only thought is – do you have a spare Bunny in case of the loss or demise of this one?

    I’ve found cats were actually decent training for having Noah. I realized the cats had absolutely nothing else to do except get what they wanted by any means necessary. I, on the other hand, had many other things I wanted to do other than “argue” with them. So they won, pretty much every time. So it is with Noah.

  3. Critter’s favorite stuffed animal so far is a kangaroo. I insisted that we get a spare, just in case. The spare also hangs out in my car, so as an added bonus Critter can play with him there.

    And Beth, I like the bit about cats being training for having a baby. It’s true, with both cats and babies/toddlers there’s a similary disparity between our respective drives to have something a certain way. Or at least between our willingness to commit to this particular goal at the expense of all else.

    I constantly find myself doing the “at least it’s not ___” thing. Like “Well, Critter is chewing on that stick he found on the ground, but at least it’s not the cigarette butt that’s lying over there…”

    While I think some kids certainly are much more challenging during certain difficult ages than others… I dunno. In Critter’s teenage years I may look back wistfully on his toddlerhood, but… I think it’s like growing up. I mean, adults talk about how easy life was back when they were kids (no job, no bills, someone else does the cooking and the cleaning, etc), but I remember being a kid, and it wasn’t easy at the time. By the standards of my life today having to face the big slide at the park is nothing, but at the time it was really scary. Each age has its rewards and its difficulties. It would just be nice to be able to trade them out a little occasionally, just for perspective.

  4. I hate to tell you this, but my eldest has an elephant that she is super attached to and has been forever. She has a certain way of holding it, where she wraps the tag around her finger and then rubs her fingers on her lip. She’s 18. As in, YEARS old. Like, legally an adult.

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