Friday, March 23, 2007

And They Gnashed Their Terrible Teeth

Jarrah has been a beast all week. For a couple months after she turned two, she was sweeter n' cream with a cherry on top. Combined with all the cute new chattiness, things were dreamy for a short while. She will be 27 months next week, and suddenly the tea party (with the china cups and finger sandwiches) is over, baby. She has spent the better part of this week crying without provocation, pushing her friends (and me!) and shouting "NO!" at the top of her lungs, even when everything is status quo.

Just when I'd decided my child has been snatched and replaced with a pod, something happened today. A breakthrough--literally. We were at the mall with Jessica and Yea Yea (aka Olivia) and Jarrah had just performed a full-scale operatic aria in Gymboree over some waterproof beach shoes. Seems she wanted to put them on--NOW--and was not interested in my reasonable argument that they were still connected to each other with tags and a hanger. There was thrashing, and wailing, and pushing, and then much more of all three. Luckily, Gymboree is one of those places where the stares you get are all sympathetic. Eventually, I had to broker a brief silence by borrowing some scissors and getting the shoes on her feet before we paid for them. I don't want to be a Bargaining Mom. I want to establish a reign in which "what I say, goes, because I'm the Mom and you're not." But today, with my head pounding, bathed in flop sweat, and a shimmer of pain zooming up and down my clenched jaw, all I wanted was quiet. I think I would have bought her one of the cash registers if I'd thought it would calm her down.

The hysterics continued at Pat n' Oscars, even after the procurement of a soft, chewy breadstick. There was a brief eye of the storm during which a great deal of pizza was consumed, but it didn't last. Having had to pee for about two hours, I fled to the bathroom, rather ungraciously leaving my screaming daughter with my friends in order to do so. When I returned, Jessica was peering into Jarrah's mouth. "Look in there," Jessica said, triumphantly. I did. I couldn't see anything under her tongue, but I could see the roof of her mouth, and there was a tooth the size of a submarine beginning to surface.

Jarrah got all her baby teeth quickly, between about nine months (or so we've been told) and sixteen. But those two-year molars have been shy about their debut. Now the moment, Dear Readers, has finally arrived.

My main thought looking at her little pink gums? OWWWWW. That is one BIG tooth, and more like it on the way! Suddenly I had compassion where once was none. I got her a smoothie in the hope of freezing her gums a bit, and she was soon lamb-like.

My questions for those of you with kids over two: How old were yours when those two-years popped through? How long did it take to finish all four? How can I ease her pain without giving her a bullet to bite on? How can I ease mine? And the big one:

How much more beastly pod child am I in for?


Anonymous said...

Great entry!

I am right behind you, I am sure of that! I think margaritas will help, us moms, of course!

Sweet Jarrah will be back in no time.



Anonymous said...

Oh, Sam, the minute I read about her Miss Hyde impersonation, I wondered if it might be teeth. Sage has not gotten her 2-year molars yet (well, she's not yet 2!), but I have been wondering myself when the fun was going to start!

I remember distinctly the moment I learned (is it weird that I didn't know this?) that teething was not one short phase of crankiness and discomfort, but rather would be spread over a number of years. Yikes.

Good luck with it, and I look forward to hearing what others say to enlighten us about what we have to look forward to!

Miss J

Anonymous said...

See Ruby Soho blog "Let's Do The Time Warp Again" & comments, for this very problem & some solutions!

Best, Gail

P.S. They're called "The Terrible Twos" for a reason.

Anonymous said...

Hi Sam!

Anton got them over a period of several months, leading up to the grand finale which was a month of solid terror (also coincidentally the month he started preschool). He was finished by 2 1/2, but the molars came in for a long time. I wanted to have a party when Dr. Dern confirmed they were all in!

It is good when they have cut through the gum, because the worst of the teething (at least for that tooth) is over. Medicate, medicate, medicate. These tots are in some serious pain.

Love, Lisa

Anonymous said...

A tooth "the size of a submarine"! :) Poor thing. I think smoothies are definitely what the dr orders. Liz

Anonymous said...


If our kids weren't 'pod people' occasionally at this age we would be totally blindsided by their teenage years, when no amount of smoothies or cute pool shoes can make it all better.

In a few weeks she will be back to normal and teething will be a distant memory.