At first when you get a baby (once the colic and breastfeeding misery is over with) it is really rather lovely. They smile sweetly and you adore them.
People say “just you wait for the Terrible Twos”, but you ignore them. Your cute little butter ball couldn’t possibly have a tantrum.
Then he does – just like they said. Howling his little head off and going red and rigid somewhere public. What they don’t tell you is that the twos bit is because it lasts for at least two years…
However, it does pass and you get a mostly sweet and childish child back. Life is good again.
After a while people start saying “just you wait until he’s a teenager… there will be hormones”. Hah, you say. Tell me about hormones – they are my superpower. You know all about hormones.
At first your darling child’s impending puberty is something mildly amusing. Short and curlies on your little one are a bit like reindeer antlers on a cat – wrong but funny anyway.
Then the moods start – your sweetie pie suddenly growls at you and tells you exactly how your parenting is lacking, how bad your dancing is, and attempts to list all the things you don’t understand.
Sometimes these lapses in charm will be caused by hunger – and boy can these teen folk eat – and sometimes they aren’t.
About this time you will become intensely embarrassing to your teenager. Mine made me promise never, ever to talk to him in front of his friends. I mustn’t say a single word.This got a bit dull so I threatened him with a spit-wash and a kiss for fun.
Before long the little chap stops being quite such a little chap and suddenly you are looking him straight in the eyes and, once again, planning to go and buy more clothes because his are too small.
While the teenager’s verbal skills don’t make much progress, their non-verbal communication comes on leaps and bounds. I had no idea a sigh or a slouch could be quite so expressive.
And a whole new world of things to worry about begins. For example, today, my teen has posted his first picture to Facebook.