Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Breakthrough

I’ve had some notoriously difficult times with Sprout during her almost three years. For a while, she refused to let me feed her. She refuses to let me read her a bedtime story. And she most certainly never gives me a hug or a kiss before she goes to bed.

One evening I escorted Sprout from the bathroom to her bedroom to help her get into pj’s. Sprout was tired. And when Sprout was tired, she was grumpy, which meant I was the absolute last person she wanted to spend time with.

She glared at me as she slowly got dressed, like the way a feral dog sizes up an opponent before deciding if they need to attack. I was in a good mood and wasn’t about to let her dampen it. Knowing I ran the risk of provoking her further, I told her I was going to tickle her and eat her belly. She grunted at me. I told her I was going to poke her ear and nibble on her toes. She turned her back towards me. I sat down on the floor in front of her when one of our cats walked in the room.

The cat in this scenario, Candy Bar, is so named because the colors of her fur resemble a candy bar that’s been stepped on one too many times. She’s incredibly sweet but incredibly needy. And she’s the loudest cat in the history of all felines. She meows and whimpers when she wants attention. She mews when she’s being pet. In fact the only time this cat doesn’t make noise is when she’s sleeping.

Candy Bar walks into the room and I tell Sprout that she’s come in to say hi. Right on cue, the cat lets loose with a small “meow.” So I meow back at the cat. She answers me. The cat and I continue to have a "conversation" for a minute before she slinks off to go pester another member of the family.

I glance up at Sprout, who is staring at me with big, round eyes like a cartoon character. “I love you!” she says.

“Oh, you didn’t know I could speak to the cat?” I said.

She excitedly shook her head no.

I got a hug and a kiss that night.

6 comments:

JD Surfs said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Surfer Jay said...

So temperamental. It's a chick thing. My 1yo threw herself on the floor today and pouted by banging her feet up and down all because I didn't let her use the fork by herself.

Andrea said...

My daughter is like that with her dad. In the nearly 4 years she's been with us he's put her to bed about a dozen times, and only because I was out of town or out for the night. We started taking turns on weekends getting up with the kids, refusing to let her get away with demanding mommy on daddy's morning. He makes pancakes, something I don't do. I try to let them have special things only they do together, like Home Depot mornings and such. It has helped but she still has her days where she doesn't even acknowledge he exists.

Hang in there. I hope it keeps getting better.

Daddy Geek Boy said...

Jay...I don't want to classify all female behavior that way (my mom and my wife read this blog, you know). But some girls do act this way. I know mine does.

Andrea...Thanks. I do special things with her. Not that it matters that much. She's loving when she wants to be.

Vancetastic said...

Now I don't feel so bad about Sprout giving me the cold shoulder!

Daddy Geek Boy said...

Vance...It's becoming her signature move.