You must be wondering if this title is making any sense at all. May be on the first read, no. But as the story unfolds, you will realize how apt it is. I remember my mama complaining, “If your child is even half as stubborn as you are, you will understand how difficult it is to be a mother of that child.” But at 5 – I didn’t understand that, at 10 – I ignored it, at 15 – I couldn’t care less for anything that my mama said and at 20 – I was bored of hearing the same oft-repeated dialogue.
But now when my daughter is 2, I understand the prophecy of my mother only too well. If I am/was stubborn, my daughter is a few notches ahead of me. Already.
She has a drawer full of shoes in all varieties, dainty sandals, flip flops, clogs, shoes, etc. Some have been bought by me while some gifted. Now having so many choices is a disadvantage that I have learnt the hard way. Of late, my little daughter wants to exert her freedom of choice. Which shouldn’t have been a problem if she understood a little. Now every time, she steps out she wants to wear shoes of her choice. And she points out at her lovely party-going shoes, Dora the Explorer. So whether she goes to her playgroup, visits her friend’s house or goes to the playground, she wants to wear her Dora shoes. Every time, invariably. And if you refuse her, she starts crying and throwing all sorts of tantrums. At the end, I hide those shoes lest they get spoiled with everyday wear and tear. Out of sight is out of mind. Why didn’t I think of it earlier? I am dreading the day when she will start selecting her clothes too. I am surely going to have a field time when that happens.
Now there’s another incident that’s recent and so very much in my mind. She is due for a haircut. I have a strong suspicion that she has magical hair that grows at the speed of grass in summer. After 15 days of getting a haircut, her bangs are already covering her eyes. But another haircut so soon when I am already reeling under the after effects of the previous one is just not possible. The little lady cries and cries and makes the simple procedure of 10 minutes stretched to an hour. Thankfully, the lady at the salon is a patient woman having a daughter the same age as mine. So I tie her hair in a pony tail and put some clips to hold the bangs in place. She put up a fight initially but when I told her ‘hairclips or haircut’, the choice was hers, she backed down. So now her hair looks neat held securely with hair ties/scrunchies and hairclips. But of late her hair has grown longer and looks untidy and unkempt. So being a holiday yesterday, I took her to the salon. We gave her all the props for distraction, chocolates, mobile phones, and other paraphernalia that the salon had. But to no avail. She didn’t let the lady cut her hair. Eventually, the salon lady suggested me to take her to a nearby men’s salon. She herself gets her daughter’s hair cut from them. So it might work out for my daughter as well.
Hoping against hope, I took her to the men’s salon. The salon was a small place but the all-male hair dressers looked inviting. They propped up some big cushions on the chair for my daughter and placed her there. Somebody even produced a chocolate for her which she readily grabbed from his hand. But as soon as she saw the scissors, she started howling. I am sure there must be people outside on the streets wondering what was happening inside. After 10 minutes of this drama, the ever-smiling lad got fed up and told me gently that he couldn’t cut the hair with her constant wriggling. She might get hurt. So thanking and apologizing at the same time to him and others in the shop, I left with my little howling daughter and the chocolate in her hand. She refused to let go of the chocolate even though she had done nothing to deserve it.
Once at home, I refused to talk to her. I was flushed with both embarrassment and anger. And my problem was still unresolved. Her untidy long hair. Now my last resort – her father is going to take her to the men’s salon on a Saturday with the iPad to keep her busy. That might do the trick. Keeping my fingers crossed!!!
And now I understand how it must feel to deal with a stubborn child. Sorry mama!!!