Crying Over Spilled Milk

We keep our refrigerator locked for one simple reason: broken eggs. Few things please our daughter more than seeing how many eggs she can throw across the room before we stop her; and it only takes one egg left unnoticed on the rug a little too long to inspire a lock and key situation.

Without regular egg-breaking stimulation, she has been forced to supplement her addiction with broken glass. She’s so quick. In the time it takes to blink, she’ll seize her window of opportunity and sprint into action. We have no drinking glasses left. One bowl. Three plates. When she enters a room you can see her eyes scanning the scene, choosing her target. Anything breakable will do, and if that isn’t available, she is always happy to push a drink off the table. 

She especially enjoys catching us by surprise. She is disappointed when we do not react at all, and she hates it when we make her clean up spilled drinks. But after trying every possible tactic without results, I am coming around to the realization that her love of breaking things is stronger than whatever brief disappointment she feels over our response. Clearly she would rather watch a plate fly across the room and break into a hundred pieces to the delight of her alone – than, well… just about anything. But we do need to come to some kind of understanding. Soon.

I am open to suggestions.

Part of me envies her. Maybe I, too, wouldn’t mind spicing up a grocery trip by smashing a few spaghetti sauce jars in the aisle. When they think it’s an accident, they don’t make us pay for what we break. And if I am going to leave Target with milk splashes all over my pants and shoes anyway… I might as well smash a gallon myself, right?

I wonder what it would feel like to walk into someone’s house, grab a wine glass from the kitchen cabinet, and just hurl it against their dining room wall? I’d laugh about it and then run out the door. It’s worth trying on someone who already isn’t too sure about me.

I have spent an unreasonable amount of time attempting to communicate with my daughter on this issue, and it’s not going great. Obviously we can’t keep buying dishes. I’d like to feel confident walking barefoot in my house again. And…I don’t want to apologize to any more store clerks, wait staff, or friends who falsely believe it is ever safe to set a cup down in our house.

Meanwhile, she has presented a pretty compelling defense. Using no words at all.


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