In the lull when no one in the family is between the age of one and three (i.e. about two years old), I forget just how exhausting it can be to be the Wall Against Which a Tireless Little Human Being Will Hurl Themselves Repeatedly, Figuratively and Literally. As it is, we now have someone who is decidely two years old. I have to remind myself that it’s good to be the Wall. Especially on those days when it seems like giving in to a tantrum or an unreasonable whim would preserve domestic peace. Not to mention my sanity.

And one day, when she’s twenty-six, she’ll take me out for coffee and thank me for standing firm. She’ll say, “Mama, I’m so glad that, despite the verbal and physical abuse I hurled at you in anger when I was two years old, you stood firm and helped me be the upstanding citizen I am today.” And then she’ll gently put her hand over my hand and say, “This coffee is on me.”

I should really call my mother…