I find myself wishing off and on that Chris and I were Jonathan's babysitters rather than his parents. Don't get me wrong, we love him very much and are extremely grateful to have him. Usually the only time I get this longing is when we actually do leave him with a babysitter. When we come back to pick him up, the answer we always get to 'How was he?' is "Oh, he's a perfect angel! I wish my kids were as calm as him! He slept almost the whole time! He's so sweet! Can I keep him?" or some variation on that. To that final question, Chris and I invariably think 'you can keep him overnight...' but we of course say nothing.
The reason for all of this? He can be a little terror. (I say this lovingly, of course.) He never screams or cries for no apparent reason in front of other people, even when we visit home or have family visit here. He is really quite a well-mannered child. Until, that is, he is alone with his parents. Then, all bets are off. Then, the sweet well-mannered child sits on the doorstep while our sweet little terror comes inside to play. Not always, mind you, but often enough for him to be just like every other child. I promise. He's a sweetheart, really he is. But he is not above screaming tantrums when I take my phone out of his reach, or unrolling the entire roll of toilet paper and then tearing it to shreds and eating it. Once, he knocked over my 3-year old violet plant and began to eat the dirt off the floor. Then threw a tantrum when I put him in his crib to clean up the mess.
I do love my child. I must stress this. He is frustrating, but I do love him so very very much, and I would not trade him for anything or anyone in this world. His mood swings throw me for a loop sometimes, but secretly, I wouldn't have him any other way.
P.S. As I write this post, Jonathan is sitting on the floor shredding a Quizno's napkin and eating it. It's cheered him up considerably from his tantrums earlier this evening. (And yes, as soon as I realized he was eating it I stopped him.)