is there an echo in here?

Wednesday, February 24th, 2010

A couple of hours ago, Hattie came walking through our kitchen where I was putting away groceries.  Laura was right behind her.  Here was their dialogue:

Hattie:  “Mooooooommmmmmmmmm!”

Laura:  “Mooooooommmmmmmmmm!”

Hattie:  “Laura’s copying me.”

Laura:  “Laura’s copying me.”

Hattie:  “Stop it Laura!”

Laura:  “Stop it Laura!”

What did I do?  I laughed.  And laughed. And laughed.  I couldn’t help myself!  I already told you that I’m not a candidate for mother of the year.

What is it about annoying someone you love just because you can?  Why do we drive each other to the brink of insanity for the kick of it?  This time I was laughing out of relief that I wasn’t the victim.  I am the prey in the copy-everything-you-say game a lot at our house.  It started when Abigail was 3.  I don’t know where she heard it or how she thought of it but we went through a period of about a month when she loved that game.  She would follow me around the house like a little puppy and mimic every word I uttered.  I know why she loved it – she always got a great reaction from me.  This game is one of those things that frustrates me every time.  There’s no explanation – it scrambles my brain waves or something.  I’m sure it’s just payback from pestering my brothers when I was little.

When Hattie turned 3, she started following Abigail around echoing her every word.  Abigail was repaying for doing it to me.  Now it’s Hattie’s turn.  As with everything she does, Laura is relentless.  She waits until Hattie is happily playing or drawing and makes her move.  I can’t do anything to stop her and as frustrating as it is, the whole thing is pretty harmless.  When Laura has a 3 year old of her own, I’m sure there will be payback for the torture she is now unleashing on her sister.

Like most things in parenthood, this too shall pass.  Until then, we’ll just have to put up with the echo…