There’s something that happens when you have a third kid. You feel like a veteran parent, while still feeling like you’re starting from scratch. You stress, but stay cool. You handle diaper changes like a boss, but still don’t understand why they have so much trouble with keeping food on their trays rather than the floor. It’s extraordinary. Another thing that happens is the third kid does whatever the heck they want. It’s pretty funny, actually.
Your first-born is the spear-header. They learn it all first, they get to know their parents first, and they quickly fall into their role as “the first one.” Second born wants to do what the first born does, naturally. But, they love to do it in a different way, just to drive their parents crazy, and throw their older sibling for a loop. It’s fun to watch that relationship grow, and the pains that may come with it. But, the third kid? The third kid doesn’t give a crap about anything. At least, that’s how my third one is handling life. He does what he wants. Climb up the couch to give Mom a heart attack? Check. Find Daddy’s secret stash of Milk Duds and go to town? Let’s do it. He’s a maniac. While I enjoy having this little personality, there is one thing that makes the back of my eyeballs itch. He refuses to say my name.
Oh, he knows how to say Mama. He’s said it quite a few times, just never to me. This 19 month old definitely understands how meaningful this is to me, so he makes sure that I never hear it. I’ve been told that when I travel, he says it. I’ve heard him babble to others and mention “Mama” when speaking whatever story he wanted to share. But, when I say “Who am I, buddy? Am I Mama?,” he smugly smirks, and turns his head. Sometimes he’ll smile at me, then give me a hug with a gentle pat on the back. It’s like he’s saying “I know what you want, but not today, Mom. Not today.”
What a freaking stinker! We’ve been doing this word tango for months now. My sweet husband has even tried to get him to say it to me, to no avail. He knows that it kind of hurts my feelings to hear our toddler yell “Dada” as soon as he comes home from work, and then the rest of the evening before he finally lays down for bed. Yup, I’ll admit it. It breaks my heart a little bit. And yes, I know that one day I’ll WISH he didn’t know my name (my first and second born have already introduced that feeling to me), but still. Can’t he say it as least once, to my face? I’d really love that. Better yet, let that be my Mother’s Day gift. No handmade cards, flowers or chocolate. I’ll take a sincere “Mama” from my little one. Say a prayer for me, will ya?