Monday, November 19, 2012

His or mine?

He's been doing it since he was an infant, using my hair as his lovey, clutching it while nursing, falling asleep with it between his fingers.  Then he became a toddler who climbed into my lap, clutching my bun with one arm and drinking his milk in the other when he needed comfort.

Now he's three, and he still wants the hair, still uses it for comfort, still leans into my shoulder clutching it as we read bedtime stories every night.  The only thing that has really changed is that he's much more articulate and specific about his wants.  

When I have my hair in a pony tail he demands that I make it a "big one", a "big ponytail mommy!", which means he wants a messy bun.  Ugh.  Okay dude, whatever.

Lately he has taken to proclaiming it "my ponytail!", and when I correct him, and say no, actually, that's mommy's hair, mommy's ponytail, he shakes his head and laughs.  

"No, it's MY ponytail."

Yup, trying to hold my hair while we attempt a family picture for Christmas cards.
He knows how much power he wields, a tiny little dictator he is, he so fiercely and sincerely believes something attached to my head is his own.

This is all so sweet and funny right?  One of those things that you write down in a kid's baby book so you can remember the details and twenty years from now when he brings home a girl to family dinner you can torture him with embarrassing stories.

Sweet and funny, sure. Also, sometimes (most times) it drives me INSANE.

Tonight I laid with him at bedtime and for a half hour he pulled and twisted and pinched and scraped my scalp with his nails that I JUST clipped this evening after his bath so how in the hell are they still so sharp?

ARGH.  I tell him he's hurting me, he needs to be more gentle.  Still.  He doesn't stop.  

I start manically rustling his own hair, twisting it between my fingers, being genuinely obnoxious.  "This is how it feels buddy, it is annoying and it hurts and we're both trying to sleep so you NEED TO STOP!"

Five minutes later it's the same story.  So I put a pillow between us and tell him he's no longer allowed to touch my head.  Touch your own hair.  Snuggle your Lightening McQueen pillow pet, for God's sake.  But STOP TOUCHING ME.

Well, that's a little harsh isn't it?

He drives me to my wit's end, to the point where I resemble a petulant child myself.

I'm seriously considering buying him a doll with long blonde hair.  I wonder if that would work?  It's a fine line between "being there" for him, snuggling, providing a means of comfort, and letting him physically abuse me all in the name of getting him to sleep.    


val said...

Kirsten used to twirl my hair into knots and at some point you do have to defend yourself, lol.

We were so in each other's orbit that the boundaries were hazy, like you and Gus. I was vert in love with her, true. And she wanted to become a conjoined twin with me. The remnants of that still haunt us a little sometimes even now, though she keeps her tiny fingers the hell out of my hair.

My whole parenthood mantra has been, "It's temporary. It's temporary."

And then I feel guilty for wishing it away.

But not really. Just the overwhelming parts.

love you, Girl. Val

Lisa said...

I remember the first time Gus cuddled next to me and gripped my ponytail as he drank his milk. It was so gosh darn sweet. There was definitely no pain involved then.

Maybe he does need a doll or some other new "lovie" to comfort him. For the sake of your head. :)

Erin said...

This SO reminds me of the post that The E is for Erin (I see you have her on your blog list) wrote about her son Miles rubbing her ears for comfort!

I think I fall kind of far on the spectrum of "don't touch me" but hoo boy, that would just be too much for me.