Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Bad Kid

I love my kids. I really do. But lately Ronan has been such a complete pill. Remember this post? Well, you can forget about it. The award has been revoked.

There are many things I admire about Ronan. His red hair, his lean and muscular build, his strong will. Oh wait, did I just say I admire that? Never mind. I hate it.

Declan has always been very sweet and accommodating, so at first I was impressed by Ronan's strength and independence. I looked at his willfulness as a positive thing, something that would make him a stronger person. And perhaps one day it will. But right now it makes him just really, really hard to parent.

When Declan was Ronan's age, we started disciplining him for typical toddler infractions by putting him in time out for 2 minutes. After a few time outs for things like throwing cups at the table or biting, he seemed to get it and stopped doing it (for the most part--hey, he's not perfect). But Ronan just doesn't seem to get it.

Ronan likes to throw things at the table. Heavy things. Towards people's heads. He finds this hilarious. So hilarious, in fact, that he waits until you're watching him, then gives a sly smile and chucks whatever's handy--sippy cup, steak knife (oops), plate of pancakes, tissues (not quite so dangerous, but still annoying). When we reprimand him for it, he laughs. When I scold him and explain to him what he did wrong and why he's going to time out, he smiles. And when he comes out of time out, suitably upset and teary, he does it all over again.

I'm sure he'll outgrow it. I don't know too many adults who throw their drinks at the table. And I know Ronan's not a bad kid. I just wish he could be a little more good.

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