Do anyone else's kids almost die of starvation daily? For some reason, mine seem to go through phases of it.
And, at the moment, our boy thinks it's the end of the world when I don't have a five-course degustation in the car for the 3km ride home from daycare that takes five minutes.
This, despite breakfast, morning tea, lunch, afternoon tea. He eats more than I do most days.
Yet seeing my face appears to cause hanger emotions. It's as if he hasn't eaten for days.
"Do you have something for me?" he asks me every daycare day. The kid deserves a medal for perseverance.
I was sucked into taking a snack with me, briefly, a long time ago. Then I decided my car wasn't a crumb museum.
For goodness sake, he can survive a five-minute trip home.
I tell him no every single day, and every single day I respond with: "Is there anything else left in your lunch box? Because you can eat that."
Usually there is a cracker or something.
"My apple and it's bwowwwwn (brown)."
That's because you eat tiny bites all the way around the middle and then leave it for the rest of the day in 28 degree heat, Bud!
Then, the thing that really makes me angry.
He starts kicking the back of my seat.
I sat on a plane for a very long time with a toddler kicking the back of my seat once and I basically have PTSD from it.
"Please don't kick my seat."
"No! I want chips! Stop at the shop!"
Excuse me?! More seat kicking because I wouldn't stop for chips. I'm just going to point out that, no, I do not stop for chips in any way that he might expect it and be mad about it not happening.
"Chips won't fill you up if you're hungry, Buddy. We're not getting chips."
"I don't love you. I want Daddy."
Straight for the jugular.
"Daddy isn't going to buy you any chips either."
"You're mean. I don't like you."
He dissolves into sobbing and tears and snot streams that make me feel quite sorry for him - because it's clear he must be quite tired.
Occasionally, when I have an episode like this, I ring my husband, just so he too can share in the joy of the noise I must suffer, if only for a warning of the mood I could be in by the time he arrives home some three hours later.
I did this but our boy stopped performing and went silent so I explained over the car
speaker system what was happening.
My husband said he wouldn't get him chips either and that our boy would have some food shortly and to be nice to me.
We hung up and I pulled into our driveway.
Then, the simplest act that tipped him over the edge: Sobbing, with snot streaming down his face, he said sadly, as if no one in the world understood his pain (which they didn't):
"You are the meanest girl in the whole world."
"Why am I mean?"
"I didn't want to go backwards. I WANTED TO GO FORWARD!"
Snot, slobber, screaming.
I had committed the cardinal sin of – wait for it - reversing into our garage. "Come here, I think you need a hug."
Usually a cuddle fixes this one.
"I DON'T WANT YOU. I WANT DADDY."
Someone help me, please. This a going to be a long afternoon.
Serious after thought: If anyone else is suffering this at the moment, it creeps up on me
every year. I find the kids get hungry and quite tired earlier in the afternoons in the
lead-up to daylight savings ending. Of course, soon 5pm will be 6pm, something I have mentioned before.
It's six weeks away, with clocks going forwards on Sunday April 7. Good luck.