I should have known right from the very beginning that this girl was going to be trouble. She was trouble, right from the moment she left the safety of my womb and nothing has eased since. P3 is a very unusual character and she’s been an interesting one to get to know.
P3 has a personality only to be described as Jekyll and Hyde. Literally in seconds she can be so happy, then turn to a blubbering wreck for a few minutes or more, then randomly switch off again and be happy. She’ll ask for a bottle of milk or juice, then push it or throw it away when you give it to her, only to cry because she wants it.
What’s even worse than the mood swings is the way she reacts to people. Absolutely anybody, including family members she knows well. She will blow raspberries although I describe it as spitting without the actual spit, and tell them “no”. This happens if a child gets too close to her, too close to me, if someone speaks to her nicely, says hello or does something she’s not happy with. That part you’d sort of expect but the nice things are super embarrassing for me. I always have to apologise and laugh it off that she’s a little unsociable.
She’s a complex character. We learn new things about her and we adapt to her ever changing wants and demands much quicker than we used to. It used to drive us crazy with frustration and I honestly think this all stemmed from when she was born. It’s a part of who she is and not something she’s learning as such. She used to cry for hours as a baby and we’d be exhausted trying to figure out what was wrong, only for her to just stop and be content again.
I baby wore her a lot as a baby. It helped to settle her and keep her content for as long as possible. But it created a bond between us that is unbreakbable and much stronger than I’ve experienced with all my girls. Now don’t get me wrong, I love that we are closer than close but lately this strength has felt quite heavy.
My hubby’s Aunt told us that P3 reminded her of hubby as a child. Forever attached to his mum’s hip or if not very close by. I hadn’t really noticed, well that’s a lie I had. If P3 is sad, she wants me and nobody else but me. If she is tired, she wants me. But his Aunt is right, she is with me pretty much every second of every single day. But recently it’s gone to a new extreme.
I can’t wash up without my little shadow by my side. I can’t pee without her wanting to be upstairs too. When we go to playgroup, she sits by my side the entire time. If we go out she wants to be held by me. If I’m working at the computer she has to be sat on my lap. I’ve become exhausted by her and I feel guilty that I feel this way.
Love is so strong. P3 loves me and I am her protector but the clingyness is literally wearing me down. I feel suffocated by her every day which is awful. I’m not somebody who enjoys being touched continuously. I need my space to feel sane and being a mum of three, it’s hard to get those moments of space. Add in a very touchy feely child and I do feel pretty inprisoned.
I’ve googled these personality traits and habits, I know I shouldn’t. I suppose because I’m aware of my brother being on the autism spectrum, my eldest daughter heading along the diagnosis of being autistic, that I’m very aware that P3 is showing strong symptoms herself. But at the moment we are embracing her fiery personality and learning to adapt to her accordingly.
This means I have to accept that I am her biggest need. I am the one who gives her everything and really, I should be proud of that. She is such a funny, loving little girl and when she’s in a good mood she’s the best company to have. But I’m sure the days of being my little shadow are numbered and I’m sure before long she’ll be breaking apart from me. Have you had experience of extreme separation problems?