My two-year-old is a mastermind at creating endless reasons for her bedtime to be delayed. My husband just shakes his head as I herd my postponing savant toward the stairs. I hear his “just put her down and walk away,” words of advice fade as we reach her bedroom. And then the litany begins:
“I want to read a book. Read a book Mommy,” she demands as she dashes for the bookcase. “Sophia, we just read two books downstairs. We’re all done with reading. It’s time for bed.”
While I check her diaper one last time before bed she says, “I have to go potty.” She’s got me trapped and she knows it. I snarl back, “Ok, but no reading, no toys, you have to be quick. This is not play time.” Three minutes later with no sign of potty and one toy request denied, we move back to her bedroom.
Once in the crib, with the blanket closing in on her, she’s suddenly thirsty. “I want milk. Please can I have some milk?” Used to these antics, I bust out a sippy cup that I’ve brought upstairs. Her thirst knows no end – every second of time she gains before lights out is a sweet victory.
“Sing to me.” Turned on her tummy now and tucked in with a blanket, she will not give up. I start to sing and she says, “Sit down Mommy.” “I can’t sit down Sophia, I’m leaving.”
As I sing my way to the doorway, she shouts, “I want Thomas. Please Mommy, can I have Thomas? I want Thomas!” A battle rages in my mind. I’m considering. I’m waffling. I cave. “Alright, I’ll go get Thomas and then we’re done and I’m not coming back!” I slink past my husband, avoiding eye contact, to retrieve her beloved toy.
I know, I know…I am getting played like a first timer in Vegas and my mommy guilt won’t let me “just walk away.” Who knew that I’d be bested by my pacifier-sucking progeny?