Well, Twitch didn’t make it. Poor fish.
Though truthfully, we’re all a little shocked he even survived the first night at all. He made it until some time last night while Daddy and I were watching Jurassic Park 3D (because Mommy has seriously seen the movie probably a thousand times, and absolutely HAD to see it in the theater. That, or have a little part of her brain implode.). We came home to find him dead at the bottom of the tank.
I’m sad – which is silly because I knew the darn thing was going to die. He’s been floating in the back corner of the tank, refusing to eat, just twitching away since we put him in it. But still. It would have been super cool for him to have survived. I could have made him a little fishy tee-shirt that said “I survived the fishy apocalypse”.
Okay, maybe I wouldn’t go that far. But still.
In the meantime, Mase went to bed last night, got naked a few times, and then seemed to settle down. We got home from the movie and I saw him in the window – by the time we walked in the house I could hear him “Mommy! Mommy! Mommy!” so I went to go put him back in bed and say goodnight.
Poopcasso Jr. has struck again. The little snit. Luckily it wasn’t a lot – and this is the fourth time in the last two weeks. Still, it could have been worse. A lot worse. One little spot on the carpet and a poopy covered kid is a whole lot less damaging than poop on all of the textured walls, toys, and every other surface of the room. That was more Kaleb’s style. Mason just covers himself. So far. I don’t know why I’m surprised. I’ve been preparing myself for this event since Mason stopped smearing six months ago. Because as different as he and Kaleb are – in many ways they are like reflections of each other. Sometimes it’s like watching a parallel universe – where their personalities are drastically different, but their actions, processes, and other such things are mirror images.
So, I knew. Because Kaleb did the same thing to me. Poopcasso Sr. smeared for what felt like forever. Even when we were stalking the video monitor he still managed to wipe poo on every surface he could get his stinky little hands on. Then he stopped for a good six months. I had six months of utter relief that the only poop I was cleaning came in the form of a diaper.
Then, BAM! Just like that. Right back to smearing every surface. Poopcasso Sr. came back with a vengeance. And I was pregnant with Mason. With extreme morning-afternoon-evening-night-if you look at me crooked I’m going to throw up sickness. I’d take one step into the hallway, get hit by the smell, and vomit on the spot. So of course then I was contending with his mess, and my own mess, while having to lock the dog outside so he wouldn’t eat it (because Milo has this disturbing obsession with eating the most disgusting things on the planet).
This? Last night? This was cake compared to Poopcasso Jr.’s mentor and predecessor.
Stick him in the bath, clean him up, clean up his room, get him out of the bath, put him in pjs, send him to bed – not even playing kid. Plant your rear in that bed and don’t you move it till the sun comes back up.
Of course, one of the biggest problems with this is the joy they both get out of this terribly disturbing habit. And I know that part of it is a sensory thing. But neither of them likes to play with PlayDoh, at least not the way it’s meant to be played with. No finger paint. Under any circumstances. So, what’s with the poop?
Problem number 2: I have no idea how far Mase is going to take this. Is Poopcasso Jr. here to stay until he finally potty trains? Will he get worse? Will he stick with this minimal action poop play? Or will we be finding poop up by the ceiling hiding behind a shelving unit in the closet three years from now (ahem – guess what Daddy found in Kaleb’s room when prepping to paint the closet? We have no idea how he even got it up there.)? I am not a fan of the Poopcasso family. I am even less a fan of the unpredictability of Mason’s determination.
Because the truth is, Mason is the most dubiously manipulative child I’ve ever seen. Some days it’s like living with Pinky and The Brain. Both boys have their strengths and their weaknesses. Kaleb’s strengths lay in academics and creativity. Mason’s biggest strength is people. Don’t misunderstand me – Mason doesn’t actually like people. In most cases (unless you’re one of the few people he deems worthy) he doesn’t care one iota about people themselves. He’s fascinated with people the way he’s fascinated with cars. He wants to know how they work. From the day he was born he’s been studying people. He watches everything from your micro-expressions to how you react in stressful situations. Within five minutes of meeting you, my Mini Monster is able to play you like a fiddle. He’ll make you love him. He’ll give you that look that says “I’m just so adorable and sweet how could you possibly think I’m anything other than a perfect angel?”
Then he’ll do something completely off the rails – send you carreening into a frenzy of “What the hell just happened here?” – and most of the time you won’t even know that it was him that did it. And by the time you start to come to that conclusion he’s giving you the look, being sweet and affectionate, and you think “No. It couldn’t possibly have been him.” While over your shoulder he’s smirking. Smirking. He’s TWO. No way should he be smirking behind your back. But he is. And he’s good at it. He can conjure tears in seconds. Beam a smile bright enough to light up a room and laugh that goofy little laugh without a single thought.
So, there are days where I’ve turned the tables. I’ve studied him. And it truly is like living with Pinky & The Brain. Mason and Kaleb are playing together – and you can see how Mason, even when Kaleb thinks he is controlling the play, is manipulating Kaleb with very little effort. He could get him in trouble, he could get him praised. He’s just that good. And then he starts yammering – and for some reason Kaleb actually understands the jumbled mess of Masonese that leaves his mouth. The next thing I know, Kaleb is in action. And it doesn’t take but a minute for me to figure out that he’s purposely trying to send me over the deep end. But then I watch Mason get exasperated and start yelling at Kaleb. Then they start fighting. In the end, Mason has come up with what I’m sure he thought of as a brilliant plan – and Kaleb executed it wrong.
“What are we going to do today Brain?”
“The same thing we do every day Pinky. Try to make Mommy insane!”
I could probably go on about this forever, but I have to go stop Mason and Leah from causing Monster War 7,985,586 in Kaleb’s room.