My kids have decided that yelling is a good way to communicate. YELLING IS THE BEST THING EVER. If they were yelling all the time, that would be annoying. The problem is that they yell intermittently at random times. Therefore and hence, my nerves are bleeding.
I'll be working at the computer in near silence and as I go to press my pinky down on the enter key, Magoo will scream, "MOMMY! I WANNADRINKAMILKFWEEEEEZE!!!!" I wish I could type something stronger than bold caps because his decibility is definitely higher than bold caps, but that's the best I can do with the limitations of this medium.
When he screams requests like that, it's with a sudden desperation and urgency, like a milk fairy shot him through his tender man parts with a milk arrow, and if he doesn't get milk AT. THIS. VERY. SECOND., he may die. It's bloodcurdling, and yet after the initial flinch, I am unmoved. I give him the squishy eyebrow and go about my business until he repeats it meekly and softly.
Laylee will screech in the middle of a sentence as if she's speaking to her imaginary children. "Oh Sarah. I love your beautiful dress. You should NEVER write with markers on IT! NEVVVVVER!"
Then she'll be dancing along, humming lovely waltz music as she twirls around the living room and suddenly her hum will turn into a shrill Tupperware-shattering operatic run and I will fall to the floor in agony.
Yesterday I caught myself yelling at the top of my lungs for them to just be quiet. I put Laylee in timeout. "Laylee," I said calmly, "Do we yell in this family?"
She looked up at me with utter confusion, a look that said, "You were just yelling but I don't want to be in timeout forever for talking back to you so I'm going to wait this out," and stayed mute.
So I apologized for yelling and now I have to go in timeout if I yell in the house too. To me, timeout seems like a great place. You chill out, staring blankly at the wall "thinking about what you've done" but honestly you can think about anything you want. Laylee's not the boss of my inner-most thoughts. No one is supposed to interact with you in timeout so it's really like a mini-vacation in the middle of the day. I may have to start yelling on PURPOSE!