The Art of Manipulation

15 Jul The Art of Manipulation

6:00 AM I’m snoozing comfortably in the master bedroom, having handed off Miles to Kris at 5:30. Kris is up early watching the Tour de France live on his laptop and Miles is up early… because he’s Miles.

6:20 AM I hear B calling out from her bedroom “Mommy! MOMMMY! It morningtime yet??”

I’ve been trying to teach her to stay in bed until 7, despite the fact she can’t tell time. It’s been a challenge.


I don’t go get her.

6:25 AM Footsteps padding down the long hallway to the master. Door creaks open. Small person with bad breath appears next to the bed, staring at me. Whispers, “Mommy? You sleeping?”
I play dead.
“Mommy, I awake.”
I’m still not moving.

Side note: This strategy actually worked a few mornings ago. She came into the room, saw that I was asleep, said “Oh, Mommy not ready awake yet…I go find Daddy.” It was a miracle. Truly.

6:27 AM After a long pause full of heavy breathing, I feel two chubby little hands grab my face. “Mommy, want to snuggle with me?”

At this heartwarming request, I open my eyes and smile. Snuggling with a toddler is one of life’s most precious gifts. My toddler is so busy and active these days, and it’s so rare that she slows down long enough to snuggle unless she’s hurt or upset.

I reply “Hi sweet girl. I’d love to snuggle with you. Here, climb up with me.” I pull back the covers and reach out to help her onto the bed.

6:28 AM Instead of climbing onto the bed, B smiles, claps her hands, and says “Oh, mommy! You awake! You come downstairs and make my oatmeal. OK?”

No snuggling. There was never to be any snuggling.

6:29 AM I pull the covers over my head as B yells “MOMMY COME ON! STAM UP! STAM UP! I WANT MY OATMEAL!”

6:34 AM I’m at the stove stirring oatmeal, wondering if manipulation is a developmental milestone I should be proud of or terrified of.

Do the parenting books tell you to expect to be played like a violin round about this age?


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