I have written a few times about Annie’s preference for Mike. It has only gotten stronger as she’s grown older. She wants him for everything. EVERY. THING. She wants him to comfort her when she hurts herself, give her food, change her diaper, you name it, she INSISTS that Mike do it for her.
Last week I asked her if she wanted to put on some shoes and go for a walk. She yelled, “YEAH!” and ran into her room. I followed her and discovered that she’d (of course) already picked out her shoes. Instead of handing them to me, she brushed past me and said, “Dada! Put on Annie’s shoes!” He helped her put them on and then we all walked to the door. Mike walked out, then Annie, and as I went to follow her she looked at me and said, “Bye, Mama,” then tried to close the door on me.
It certainly sounds good to have Mike do everything. I mean, he’s off changing diapers and I’m eating bon bons (in my head). But I hate how dismissive she is with me. If I try to do anything she has decided she wants Mike to do, she throws a Toddler Fit.
Sometimes we spend the extra time letting her scream while I dress/bathe/feed/clothe/hug her…you haven’t lived until you’ve basically had to sit on Annie to get a diaper on her. But I hate it. HATE IT. It makes me feel like absolute crap when she’ll, say, throw her favorite food on the ground just because *I* gave it to her. Mike can pick that food up and she’ll say “thank you” and then eat it.
On Friday we went to Dr. Looove’s office for our flu vaccines. Mike was holding Annie when she got her shot, and while she didn’t cry, she was NOT please. I praised her for being brave, and then something remarkable happened: she reached for me! I happily took her into my arms, and once I was holding her she shot Mike a death glare. I’m not going to lie – I was ecstatic. As we walked out of the office, Annie put her head on my shoulder and said, “Love mama.” I was finally the good parent!
Then we got home. Dada dada dada. Annie’s nap in the car erased all memories of Evil Daddy. My brief reign as Preferred Parent had lasted less than an hour, and she’d slept 95% of that time.
Of course, it was pretty great to be the outcast parent later when Annie had vaccine-induced diarrhea. After Mike cleaned her up, I put her pants back on and stood her up.
“Want to come read a book with me, Annie?”
“NO MAMA!” Then she literally pushed me out of the way on her quest to find Mike.
It’s a phase, it’s a phase, when is this phase over?