I started a post with this same title three years ago when Z was E's age now. I had been complaining to CG about how clingy Z was, how impossible it was for me to cook dinner/fold laundry/shove food in my pie-hole/DO ANYTHING, because I "always have this barnacle attached to my side". CG, being a biologist and resident Know-er of Annoyingly Useful Knowledge, corrected me: "I'd say she's more like a remora than a barnacle." And I, once again, snuck over to my laptop to Google a word I was pretty sure he just made up.
Remora: noun. Marine fish with a flattened elongated body and a sucking disk on the head for attaching to larger fish or moving objects.
I think this photo sums up how I feel much of the time.
It is vaguely comforting to know it was a phase that Z obviously left behind sometime between one and a half and FOUR, however it is no accident that I NEVER FINISHED THAT PREVIOUS POST. Because this is my life right now: I'm lucky if I finish wiping my ass.
E has two settings at the moment: gleeful destruction and remora-like clinging. It seems she must even out every moment of running full speed into traffic with an equally stressful high-octave cling-fest later. It is simply exhausting as she toggles between the two with little to no transition or warning. When she has decided she is finished clinging for the moment, she will suddenly fling herself out of my arms, headfirst, with such force and velocity that I fear it is only a matter of time before she lands smack on the top of her wee head. (Though, I must say, my reflexes are getting SHARP. Give me a bow and arrow! I'm ready for the Hunger Games!) She prances away from me at the library or at home while we're folding the laundry and the next thing you know she's found a stack of books to knock over onto smaller children or she's twisted my delicate eyeglasses that she managed to pull out of their case. The case that was in my fully zippered purse. Which was in the CLOSED closet. The last time I tried to pee with her in the room (because, of course, I cannot pee without her, lest she scream her little head off outside the door), she managed to pull down a bottle of infant Tylenol I had on the counter (because, of course, she's also teething) and opened the DEFINITELY CLOSED child-proofed cap while I watched. And all that was just today.
But WOE UNTO YOU if you try to leave her. And by "you" I mean ME. It's all Mommy, all the time over here and as flattering as it might seem from a distance, it frankly sucks (pun not intended but accepted) from up close. I cannot leave the room, or even her line of sight, without her wailing and needing to be picked Uhp! UHp! immediately. Since she has yet to develop the remora's suction cup (Oh, but GIVE HER TIME), the dinner hour requires me to break out the Ergo and chose between strapping her on my front (all the better for her to pick my nose and laugh while I try to see the stove over her head and not burn her toes), my side (where she tries to pinch off the skin tags that grow on the loose flesh between my former boobs and my armpits), or my back (where she likes to pull the little wispy hairs at the base of my neck until I come unhinged.)
This is where my little girl leaves the remora behind because, according to University of Michigan Museum of Zoology, remoras are "considered to have a commensal relationship with their host, since they do not hurt the host and are just along for the ride." (Add "commensal" to the list of words I had to look up because I was pretty sure someone made them up.) They also, apparently, help out by removing parasites off the host.
Yo, E. Those skin tags are not parasites. Leave them be.
And, apparently, E didn't get the memo about NOT HURTING THE HOST.