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Last night Bunlet woke me up in the middle of the night with his piteous crying. I am not sympathetic when abruptly woken, so as I reeled towards his room I reminded myself to show compassion as opposed to hissing what the fuck is your problem? He sat up in bed and informed me I love daddy more than I love you.

Okay, I replied, and went back to bed. Then I indulged in some fantasies about a) taking away his pillows to make him cry and b) replying No worries, I love Bun Bun more than I love you.

Both toddlers are in a daddy preferring phase right now, which is hard to take. They cry when they find out it’s my turn to do something, and on Sunday Bun Bun had a full on tantrum because I was the one giving her a bath.

I remind myself it’s normal, and that being the preferred parent is supposedly not nice either (wouldn’t know). I remind myself that them being hurtful is good training for their adolescence. Mostly I am good about crying in a corner rather than getting mad and rejecting them right back, but it hurts my feelings and some days the hits just keep coming.

However, I’ve got a dirty baby hoarding secret. While I love them all equally, I sometimes prefer the company of different children at different times. Depending on what’s up with them developmentally, one or another may be easier to get along with.

Right now, I like Bunter and Bun Bun, while Bunlet is pissing me off. Bunter, at 2.5 months, reliably sleeps between 10pm and 4:30am, sometimes 5:30. She makes a heartbreaking squeaking noise when she’s distressed. She desperately struggles to get her thumb in her mouth, and fails. She has become delightfully plump (80th percentile!) and here she is caught in the act of smiling.


Serious baby. AS IF I’d ever smile.



LOVE LOVE LOVE. So we’re getting along well.

Bun Bun, when she’s not rejecting me, is super fun to hang out with. She chops carrots, cracks eggs, folds laundry, and wants to be read to endlessly. Left to her own devices, she plays fascinating, elaborate games that I can listen in on, many involving cake and various animals. She sewed a stocking for her stuffed bunny. She’s just my speed.

Bunlet, on the other hand, has recently become an asshole. He shouts NO! when I tell him to do something reasonable like put on his shoes. He throws things. He tears books ON PURPOSE, a capital crime as far as I’m concerned. He stares into space obliviously when I need him to execute some simple directive. He refuses to put his toys away, claiming I too tired. I’ll just supervise. I spend a lot of time doling out consequences and not much time enjoying his company.

It’s a bummer, because it wasn’t so long ago that he was the one I found easiest. Where did that Bunlet go?

It’s okay. The wheel never stops turning. Soon enough he’ll be back on top. In the meantime, I’ll just keep my mouth shut and nurse my little secret.

13 Comments Post a comment
  1. One of the truly delightful perks of having more than one is being able to have favorites. (Alas, it’s a perk I’ll have to forego). I have been known to reply to middle-of-the-night wakings by shouting “Mommy is ASLEEP. Mommy is NOT coming in to tuck you in.”

    And then the plaintive cry of “dahd, dahd, dah-dee” (best I capture that lovely British accent) comes forth, because she knows that Joel will eventually cave.

    Those nights, she is not generally my favorite child.

    January 11, 2016
  2. sangela71 #

    “Bunter” is adorable. 🙂

    Our twin sons are just passing out of the phase you describe for Bunlet and slowly moving on to be more like your description of Bun Bun. So I get it.

    January 11, 2016
  3. Nicky #

    I bet Bun Bun would like books on CD. My kindergartener would also be read to endlessly, and CDs have more stamina than I do.

    January 12, 2016
  4. FUCKING THREE is the worst. I also dislike my middle child at present, as every damn thing is an argument / screaming fit.

    January 12, 2016
  5. The frugal ecologist #

    We have a delightful, imaginative, articulate 2 year old and infant twins that eat around the clock. Guess who my favorite is…

    January 12, 2016
  6. My favorite daughter switches daily. If not hourly. 😉

    January 12, 2016
  7. I love how truthful you always are, thank you

    January 12, 2016
  8. Ha! So much truth. The other day Mr D was explaining to me that his dad is a little better than me – but just a LITTLE bit. That coming from the child that is just a little easier to parent – but just a LITTLE.

    January 12, 2016
  9. Steph #

    Oh the asshole phase is happening here too. I might just die over it. All the “No” and “I don’t want to go to school” hell I get it but come on it’s only preschool kid.

    I empathize. It sucks. Right now I’d take a delightful and adorable 2.5 month old who can’t yet talk. Love to you all.

    January 12, 2016
  10. I seem to remember saying mean things to my mother because of the thrilling power rush it gave me, though actually I *didn’t* wish I’d never been born/hate her or whatever it was. I loved her terribly. I suppose I wanted to exert the one bit of power I had.

    Bunter’s smiles are so unabashed and sweet. Truly adorable.

    January 13, 2016
  11. What a rascal, that Bunlet. Luckily, the adult-pleasing phase of his young childhood is just around the corner, which is absolutely useless to you right now. You can ship him up to Canada for a few weeks if you want. What’s another child who hits and defies me?
    And that delicious newborn of yours is…..ooohhh, so incredibly precious. I love her. I keep looking at her pictures on my phone and smiling. But the winning smile goes to the photo you posted here. (hear melts completely).

    January 15, 2016
  12. Love this.

    January 18, 2016
  13. SRB #

    Firstly, that baby girl looks SO MUCH like Mama. Like whoa. Especially in that lovely shade of green. ❤

    And yeeeaaaaaaah. I prefer one to the other on an ever changing basis. I usually prefer the one that is a) not a chronic asshole and/or b) prefers me to Daaaddddddy and/or c) can use the toilet.

    January 25, 2016

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