I think it means to knit through the back loop of each knit stitch, so it would be k1 tbl, k1 tbl, p2. Is it a k2 p2 (2x2) rib that you're supposed to end up with? Can you link to the pattern?
Cheating is an option. . . . Cheaters never win and winners never cheat, but smart knitters who want to retain an iota of sanity do, cheerfully. ~~Kory Stamper