I am one of those people who loves the Facebook “On This Day” app. I find it funny and nostalgic, although the further back it goes the more I apparently vaguebooked. (In the days before restricted lists, I suppose.)
So a few days ago, Facebook served me a message from someone who wrote on my wall in 2009. (We met in third grade, but haven’t seen each other in at least 25 years.)
So I saw this and nearly doubled over laughing. Because this sweet little girl, who now has two younger sisters, has made it all the way to being a tween. Her parents have (based on the pictures and posts) experienced some lovely times with her.
And soon, God willing, she will be consumed by, as we (read: Miss M) call it around here, The Puberty.
But back to being 3 1/2. Did I angst about this on Facebook? How did Brian know that I had tips? Because at this point AM had just turned 3. (Where tips would mean referrals to Ask Moxie.)
And I am curious as to what I would say. Or did say. (Pinky swear, I have not yet searched my message archives.)
Because now that I’ve done this twice, I would probably just advise to lay in the coping mechanisms of choice (alcohol, sweets, salty snacks, trashy magazines, Netflix, whatever) and stay sympathetic but vaguely detached. Don’t take things personally, because the three-year-old freak outs are so about them, not you. (Those kids are working out some STUFF, and if you get wrapped up in it you will never have the strength to wash those gigantic piles of dishes that show up in your sink EVERY SINGLE DAY.) Get some friends who will listen to all your funny-crazy stories and reassure you that you are not insane and that you have not broken your child.
NEWSFLASH: Your three-year-old is already broken. It is entirely possible that only you can see it, because he or she is so funny and so charming and so willfully adorable to the outside world that you think you might be raising the next Sybil.
(It gets better. Sort of. It gets different, surely.)
In sum, this is not an age I miss in my house, but I find other people’s three-year-olds hilarious.
So what advice would you give yourself, in retrospect?