ava’s rsv is gone. you know, aside from the first few days where there was fever and wheezing and general unpleasantness, it wasn’t that bad. really, i was mostly affected (negatively, of course) by the awfulness of sitting in our house all day and avoiding contact with anything younger than 12 months (cat doesn’t count). i think ava was thinking, ‘what is wrong with this mom? she used to take me places, but now she’s duddy.’ and it’s true, i was duddy. but she was difficult! somehow my duddiness awoke the independent 2-year-old in my 19-month-old and now she has a temper tantrum EVERY OTHER FREAKING MINUTE.
i don’t know if i can properly convey the amount of exasperation this makes me feel.
me: ava, would you like some applesauce?
ava, nodding: yes.
i take the applesauce from the fridge, pour it in to a bowl, get a spoon, put it on the high chair tray, go to lift ava in to the high chair–
suddenly she’s a wet noodle, slithering all over the floor, throwing herself every which way and hitting her head repeatedly. i can only hope that this repeated head injury will result in a soap-opera-like coma where she slips out for a little while, i get a little dramatic mourning in, a good nap and then she wakes up slightly hazy but back to her normal self by the end of the week. meanwhile, i can only try to understand what has set off this child. she looks up at me, sobbing, excreting tears, mucus and saliva from every possible source on her face. she looks like death.
me: don’t you want applesauce?
more tears. somewhere, a nod.
me: well, get in to your seat and i’ll give it to you.
more tears. and a wail. it’s loud. i wince.
me: ava, i don’t know what you want.
i’d like to add that if i spoke to myself in the patronizing tone i’m using on my daughter, i’d probably act like a limp noodle too. note to self: work on this.
me: ava, your applesauce is waiting.
ava mumbles something but it is incomprehensible due the amount of saliva stretching from her chin to her bellybutton. i don’t even want to think about the carpet.
me: what? i couldn’t hear you.
ava, again, mumbles something awkward.
this time, there is sarcasm in my voice. i am a bad mother.
i hand her the spoon. she stands, red eyed and slimy, raising her arms so i can put her in to her seat. i do so and she happily settles down to a bowl of applesauce.
OH. MY. GOSH.
this has to stop. BUT HOW?