My in-laws were in last week. One afternoon, maybe because so many people have come and gone recently, Edie went completely off the rails in a mind-bending two-hour tantrum. She talked her way out of time-out four times, and like a jerk I kept falling for it.
After she'd exhausted both of us, I was giving her a lecture about being nicer to her Grandpa Paul. Possibly keen to change the subject, she started asking where her Grandpa John was. Seattle, I said. "And... where's my... Grandpa Ivan?"
This was actually my Grandpa Ivan, who she only knows from photos. What do you say? I guess you say he's not with us anymore. Not knowing what else to talk about, I start telling her how she would have liked him, and he was very kind to me when I was a little boy.
Explaining my grandfather to my own child, maybe I just suddenly got kicked in the ass by the circle of life, you know? Or mabye it was because her tantrum had me at the end of my rope already. But I instantly lost it. Which made her freak out all over again and I had to get it under control.