January 6, 1970


Ned is still the problem child. His extremes seem to get wider all the time, and the old adage "when he's good, he's very, very good; when he's bad he's horrid" holds truer every day. When he's good, there is indeed nothing better. He's cute, loving, interested in everything around him and a real pleasure to be around. When he's in a mood, nothing makes him happy. A glass of juice put 1/8 of an inch away from where he wanted it sends him into a tantrum, and the longer you try to help him, the worse he seems to get


January 21, 1970


Yesterday Ned came out to the kitchen to get some juice and threw his usual tantrum ("I don't want juice!") when I handed it to him. I did what I usually do, put it on the counter where he could reach it and walked away. He took the cup and went into the living room. A few minutes later he came out with the empty cup and said "I want some more." I said, "OK" and he said "you put the juice in the cup and I say 'I don't want juice' and you put it up there" (indicating the counter). I dutifully poured the juice, Ned screamed "I don't want any juice!" and I put the cup on the counter, said "is that what I'm supposed to do?" He grinned and said, "yeah," took the cup and left!


February 13, 1970


The tension between Ned and me is growing by leaps and bounds...This afternoon to avoid the normal yelling match which follows his waking up from his nap, I poured juice for him and Jeri (as usual) and gave him his choice of which cup--the pink or the green--he wanted. He just screamed, pointing at the dispenser and said he wanted the yellow one. He never did drink his juice till about an hour later, as I put a cup (green, I think) on the table and left it there for him.


August 21, 1970


The kids went into the kitchen for juice. They had been up very late going to a model rain show and were very tired. I guess I was too. Ned said, "I want the pink cup." I handed one to him and he said, "It's squished," and wouldn't take it. The next pink cup in the Dixie cup dispenser was about five up and I decided he could take a blue cup or a green cup. I presented him with this choice and he cried that he wanted the pink one. I felt a little ridiculous standing there shouting, "the pink cup is squished, now take a blue cup or a green cup or nothing!" He finally went to bed without juice, screaming for a pink cup while I was yelling back, "do you want a blue cup?" Somehow five years ago I didn't envision this was what motherhood was all about.

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