(Flashback to Toddler days)
When you are parenting a toddler with special needs simple little things somehow have the ability to turn into ridiculous struggles. For example, the diaper change. Toddler could have a full diaper that is leaking and sagging and cold and visibly uncomfortable but HEAVEN FORBID I try to slow him down to change that nasty thing. I suddenly become WORSTMOMEVERRRR. I have been known to pin him down with my feet to keep him still (taking great care of course to ensure he remains uninjured). Gotta get the job done somehow, right? The whole scene gets even uglier when there is poop involved, but leaving him in a soiled diaper is not an option. I have to remove any possibility that he might be inspired to engage in creative finger painting, if you get my meaning.
Toddler was especially angry during a recent diaper change and kicked and screamed and squirmed and flailed the entire time. You would have thought from his behavior that I had just told him that he could NEVEREVERGOOUTISDETOPLAYAGAIN. EVER. That’s how upset he was. I got creative in my desperation, and had to drape the entire length of my legs across his body to help keep Hurricane Toddler contained. My thighs pinned his feet and my feet held down his arms. It was an epic battle, one for the history books, but I fought valiantly. Significant progress had been made for Team Mom when Toddler suddenly was able to wrench his arms free. His wrath poured out in all its glory as he furiously began to push the diaper off his body. I continued to fight against him, and finally yelled in exasperation, “I…WILL…WIN!!!”
My preschool-age child had been nearby the whole time, calmly watching the whole chaotic episode. When the diapering was finally complete Toddler was rolling around on the floor, tears streaming down his face, still howling his protests, still without pants. And I sat in silence, exhausted.
Gazing at a screaming Toddler who was by now foaming at the mouth, Preschooler soberly asked me, ”Did you win?”
“What do YOU think?” I responded wearily.
After thinking for a moment, his response was simple, “I want juice!”