Now that she is four years old, I think Xixi must have taken some sort of smart ass seminar when I wasn't looking. She has been super sarcastic with me. Granted, I have the same exact habit and I find myself aiming this sarcasm at my kids. I do it with Michael, too. When I'm getting all smart alecky, I can see my husband's eyes glaze over like he is planning my death, are at least causing me some sort of bodily injury. But Xixi, its like she woke up one day with a 'tude and a sharp little tongue.
What's up with that?
And it's not just sarcasm. It's this crazy, don't-you-know-yo-mama-will-snatch-you-up-by-your-hair-if-you-keep-talkin'-like-that kind of attitude.
Take Monday, for instance. Nap times in my household--beyond the baby years-- are code for, I can't stand to be around you for another minute. If you want to continue living, please take a nap. So, I put her in bed. Obviously, these children do not grasp the divine privilege of getting to take a nap in the middle of the day.
A few minutes later, I went to check on her and she was having a full-on Barbie/My Little Pony reunion on her window sill. Toys, dolls, doll clothes, crayons, brushes, rubber bands, barrettes and coloring books strewn all over the floor.
In a matter of minutes.
I put her back in bed, gave her the warning and shut the door behind me.
Then I went to check on her about ten minutes later. She was doing the same thing, humming to herself quietly, without a care in the world. This time I bent her over and gave her a good one on her padded little behind.
I know, that was like kicking a puppy. Shooting a baby deer. Stomping a baby chick's nest.
C'mon, my daughter inherited her mother's butt. That spank didn't hurt her in the slightest. It was the message I wanted convey to her that was important, not unlike whacking a small dog with a rolled up newspaper. You may be the baby, you may be my mini-me, you may have the cutest little New York accent, but I still have to deal with your naughty little ways! She let out an obligatory cry and before I could even get out of the room I hear her little voice.
"That didn't even hurt."
It kinda sounded like this: Dat didn't eeeven hwut.
All of my Pentecostal background came right back to me. The robes, the speaking in tongues---ooooh, shamma-lamma-ding-dong!--the dusty bible hitting the pulpit, it all came flooding back. I was ready to get all Old Testament on her.
Spare the rod, spoil the child. Oh, you know me too well, Lord. I won't spare anything!
Do not withhold correction from the child: for if thou beatest him with the rod, he shall not die. See, she won't die, cuz I only wanna beatest her a little.
Thou shalt beat him with the rod, and shalt deliver his soul from hell. All I'm doing is saving this poor child!
Foolishness is bound in the heart of a child; but the rod of correction shall drive it far from him. And that is what I felt like doing, driving far, far from here.
Xixi got...how can I put this delicately?...an Old Testament can of whoop ass opened up on her. You'd think I was killing her with the way she screamed bloody murder.
"Now, did that hurt enough?" I asked, in the sweetest tone I possess, with a smile on my face.
She just cried louder. I would have spanked her for that, but I already had a crowd of boys at her door behind me, demanding to know what happened to Xixi, and why did I have to spank her. So I told them if they didn't disperse from my view, they'd get what Xixi just got. They all scurried away like roaches.
That's what I thought.
Later on that day, I overheard Xixi playing with her dolls again.
Oh my gosh, like yeh. Hi, friend. Do you like my dress? Do you wanna come and play? Uh, yeh, like totally! Um, hey friend, did you know I have like, the meanest mama evah? Um, like yeh, she gives lot of spankings and I didn't even do nuh-thing, alls I said was that didn't even hurt...duh! Uh-huh...
I told Michael what she said and he just laughed. "That' s what you get. Your daughter is a beast just like you. Like mother like daughter."
I swear, I get no respect around here.
He's got a point though.