The Devil and Declan Sweazy or 17 Months

Thursday, September 20, 2012

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What are you looking at? Seriously? I'm asking you.

My monthly baby center emails tell me a lot of things, like how Declan should have a fairly robust vocabulary (he does not), how he might be ready for toilet training (the editor at Babycenter might have mad cow disease), and how parents actually write in to volunteer how they toilet trained their full-vocabulary possessing, 17 month angels in a weekend (lying liars).

What is does not tell is why, at 17 months, my baby is kind of an asshole.

In fairness, if I was relegated to expressing my self by two vocabulary words, ball (Ba!) and car/truck/ihavewheels (Kai!), I would be pretty pissed off, too. But this baby rage. It's some impressive shit to behold.

There is the immediate bucking, the flailing, the screams, and then the search to find something to bash his head against. For years I believed the kid from the movie Parenthood, the one with the helmet? The head banger? He was a plot gimmick until I gave birth to a child who regularly has a splotch of dirt and some dog hair on his forehead from banging it on the floor.

But when he is good...

He reads books about puppies and then tries to nuzzle the picture on each page. When we're hanging out, in between the head thrashing? He just stops, closes his eyes, holds out his arms and does what sounds like his best attempt at a Fonzie impression (hheeeeeeeyyyyyaaaaaaaw). Because this is his invitation to you to bring it in, to get the best hug you've ever had in your entire life. One of those Fonzie hugs erases a dozen of those bucking, head bucking moments in an instant. Especially when he tries hug the dog. Murphy does his best to ignore bipolar baby.

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