Everyone said I was getting off easy with Girl Terror. She was an adorable baby, and never gave me any trouble. She was easy to feed solids to, she slept through the night early, and she stayed out of trouble. If we didn't want her to touch a bookcase, we just had to lean a baby gate against the bookcase. She wouldn't even think to check if the gate was attached. When we told her "no", she generally accepted it, and moved on. Then, along came the Boy.
Maybe it's because boys are generally more adventurous. Maybe it's because he's bigger, solid, and less "fragile" feeling than Girl Terror was. Maybe it's because he's the second child, and I have more going on each day. Or maybe he's just evil to the core.
Boy Terror feels that baby gates are for his enjoyment. He shakes them, tries climbing them, moves them all around the house. The only secure one we have, at the top of the stairs, is bolted to the wall with 3 inch long screws. And they are coming loose.
He climbs. Over the couch, on the piano bench, into the TV stand, under the table, everywhere. He never stops to check to see if his whole self will fit, he just rams in. His favourite mountain to climb is Daddy. He just digs his giant toes in, and pushes off with all 30 pounds.
I knew diaper changes would be different for a boy, for the obvious reasons. But he has taken diaper wrestling lessons somewhere. He wants me to kiss his toes. So he kicks my face. He wants to flip over, and so I end up trying to pin his naked self down while strapping the diaper on. He really, really, wants to stretch his penis to the sky, so he grabs it and yanks. Hard. I do nothing on that one. I don't have that equipment, so I have no ideas. I DO wish he'd wait for me to get the poop off his balls before he grabbed them.
Girl Terror had a huge collection of books. They were loved and valued, and treated with great care. Then along came her brother, and chewed them to shreds. We actually had to put all books out of his sight for a few months of teething. Now, all the kid books (except a few cherished ones in her room) look like a family of mice found them.
The kid is persistent. If I move him away from a lamp, or a cord, or anything that he has discovered, he will go back again and again and again and again.....until I finally put the interesting object out of sight. The books all say to distract, offer something else. Right. I don't have anything else that is as interesting as a 6 foot tall lamp. And the plug-in for the TV is the Best Toy Ever, according to my son.
Girl Terror learned very early that Kitty is nice to look at, occasionally to pet, but other than that, leave the cat alone. She is a moody little cat, and she bites if provoked. I thought Boy Terror would catch on eventually, but he hasn't yet. He loves to step on her, sit on her, kiss her, and of course, pull her fur out and eat it. I don't know why he eats it. I stop him every chance I get, but I often find him with cat hairs stuck to his chin. The cat does not like the sitting, stepping, and fur eating. Kitty has tried gentle biting, harsher biting, and yowling. None of it worked, so now she just avoids him as much as possible. It's too bad, because he really loves her. He sees her as a warm, playful snack bar.
I am hoping that as he grows up, he will morph into a human. I want to be able to understand why he does the things he does. Why is he so different from his sister? I know it is probably a good thing, but it's giving me grey hairs. By the time he's a teenager, I will be the one behind the baby gates, chewing on the cat's tail.