Leo’s daily requests that we call him different names went from cute to crazy. He screams at innocent people—even children—when they call him Leo. A lady at the grocery store called him “sweetie” and he threw a tantrum. I took him down the aisle and tried to give him a pep talk. She came up and said, “Did I say something wrong?”
Plus, sometimes it feels like you can’t win:
“Leo, it’s time for bed.”
“No, I am the goalie!”
“Okay, Goalie. It’s time for bed.”
“No, I am the Big Boy!”
“Big boy, it’s time for bed.”
“No, I am the lion!!”
And he’s not saying this sweetly. He’s screaming while stomping his feet. It’s gotten to the point where I cringe when I hear his name. I think, “Oh, no. Here we go again.”
I knew it had to stop when I witnessed him throwing a tantrum while playing with his Little People. “What’s wrong?” I asked. “Driver called me Ee-oh so I hussed.” (The Fisher Price Little Person, the school bus driver, called him Leo so he fussed.)
Here are the new rules: We will call him whatever he wants—basketball player, baby, the conductor, Gordon, goalie, “hoot”ball player—when we’re at home. Once we leave home, he is Leo. I even made up a little spin he can do to go from a character to Leo. He says, “I am basketball player” and then turns around two times and then says, “Now I am Leo.”
He seemed to accept this today when we were out and about. At sports class he let his coach and the other kids call him Leo. In the car he tried to trick me though: “Mama say, ‘Why are you sad, basketball player?’” I said, “Why are you sad, Leo?” He “hussed” a little until I reminded him that he is Leo when we’re not at home.
And here are a few pictures that don’t really have anything to do with his characters; they’re just cute: playing in the leaves after sports class with John, hanging out with Grandpa Ron and playing on an airplane at the PDK airport playground (where he was, of course, “the pilot.”)
Leo’s rendition of Rock-a-bye Baby. Don’t let him near a real baby!
As “The basketball player”