It should be made clear at the outset that The Toddler loves The Baby. The Toddler is very proud of The Baby. She likes to show The Baby to anyone and everyone: ‘My sis!’ Nonetheless, The Baby is, on occasion, a big disappointment to The Toddler; and here are five and a half reasons why.
1. She sits on her bottom when she has been explicitly told, several times, ‘Come on, The Baby! Quick, quick!’
2. She upsets the cat. The Toddler has worked very hard to earn the cat’s attitude of contemptuous tolerance towards her. The Toddler plays it cool. The cat respects this. The Baby does not play it cool. The baby is overzealous in displaying her love of the cat. The cat doesn’t like it. Now, what it comes down to is this: we all love the cat, but some of us (naming no babies) are upsetting her and ruining it for everyone else. The Baby is not a team player: ‘Mummy, The Baby naughty. Cat not happy.’
3. She does not kiss properly. The Toddler says, ‘Mummy, want to kiss The Baby. Bring here. Kiss.’ The Baby is duly presented for toddler kisses. The Toddler tries to kiss The Baby. The Baby turns her head. The Toddler laughs, ‘No, The Baby: kiss! Come here! Kiss!’ The Toddler tries again. The Baby turns her head. The Toddler is nothing if not persistent: ‘No – kiss!’ She approaches The Baby once more. The Baby puts her head forward. Things are looking promising. The Baby has remembered this kiss thing: she is going to nail it this time. The Baby opens her mouth and grabs The Toddler’s hair. Not quite, The Baby. Despite The Baby’s failure to reciprocate appropriately, The Toddler is determined to show The Baby love. The Baby will be shown love. It is therefore now cuddle time: ‘Cuggle! The Toddler cuggle The Baby!’ The Toddler moves toward The Baby. The Baby reaches out her arms – she has spotted hair again. The Toddler dodges: ‘No, The Baby! Don’t!’
4. She does not do the Hokey Cokey. The Toddler is doing the Hokey Cokey. Which is to say, she is doing the important part of the Hokey Cokey: running in and out whilst screaming, ‘Rah, rah, rah!’ The Baby is sitting on the floor, chewing a toy remote control. The Toddler turns to her: ‘Come on, The Baby! Cokey!’ The Baby continues to sit on the floor. She continues to chew the remote. She shows no inclination to do the Hokey Cokey, or even to turn around. Not a single arm goes in or out. The Toddler turns to Silly Mummy: ‘Mummy! The Baby’s turn! Cokey!’
5. She is not a bumble bee. The Toddler is dressed as a bumble bee. For reasons that are incomprehensible to The Toddler (The Baby does not have a bumble bee outfit), The Baby is not dressed as a bumble bee. The Toddler addresses The Baby firmly: ‘The Baby bee! The Baby get clothes! Bee! Buzz!’ Despite these very clear instructions, The Baby continues to not be a bumble bee.
5 1/2. The Baby is not doing the Hokey Cokey dressed as a bumble bee. The Toddler knows it can be done: she herself is doing the Hokey Cokey dressed as a bumble bee. The Baby remains very uncooperative on both points. Disappointing.