As the months pass by you seem to get more and more energetic, while I get less and less. You’re learning to be patient with me and my growing belly, and I’m trying my best to keep up with you. Most days we meet somewhere in the middle on my ever-shrinking lap.
When I stop in to get you from your crib in the morning, the first thing you always say is “oh HI, mommy!”, followed by “I had a bad dream!”. I usually ask you what your dream was about, and it never sounds all that bad to me. You usually reminisce about something we did recently….like the time a clown made you a balloon butterfly, visiting your cousin for her 4th birthday party, or how you got to ride TWO ponies at the farm. All things you loved doing the first time around and I can’t imagine your little brain torturing you with alternative scenarios at this age.
You are also fond of letting us know that you don’t want something we offer (food, drink, toy), or ask of you (come here, give it back, take a bath, go to sleep) by exclaiming “I no do/want (insert whatever it is) ANYMORE!!! Sometimes this phrase slips out of your mouth before you’ve have a chance to really think about it resulting in a quick change of heart once your brain catches up.
You’re becomming more and more expressive as your personality grows. You give us a little smirky smile when you do something you know is cute, or that makes us laugh. You tap your finger to your mouth and say “hmmmm” when you’re thinking something over. You throw your arms up over your head and say “awesome” when you are particularly excited about something. You are always dancing and often singing. You walk around the house humming a little tune to yourself (a trait I never noticed I inherited from my mom until you started to copy me). And, you still love to play chase and be tickled, snuggled, and kissed. Hugs are still your very favorite way of displaying affection though, and you’ll often apologize by running up and announcing “Big Hug” before throwing your arms around us.
We’re working on the idea that you are a big girl now, and that you are about to be a big sister too. You’re not fond of either sentiment at the moment, but I can’t really blame you. Part of that transition to big girl status means giving up your beloved Ginkies…which have gotten a bit out of control lately. Shortly before your second birthday you started obsessing over them. Not only do you need one for your mouth but you insist on carrying one or two around with you at all times so you can swap them out at will. You’ve got them spread out all over the house, like a squirel with nuts. We decided to wean you slowly, starting with letting you have ONE at nap and bedtime now and going pacifier-free the rest of the time. You protested the first couple of days but have now resigned yourself to the idea and only cry briefly when I make you leave it in the crib in the morning when you wake up. I know they bring you a sense of comfort, but I have to admit I like not seeing them hanging out of your mouth every second, and it’s so much easier to understand what you’re saying now too.
We’re also easing you into potty training more and more. You’ve been sitting on the potty before your baths for the better part of a year. Now I let you run around for diaper-free after you get out of the tub too on the promise that you won’t go pee-pee on the floor. So far I haven’t pushed you, and you haven’t had many accidents, but neither of us is fully committed to the process just yet.
You wander farther and farther away on our outings now as you test your boundaries and get comfortable with your independence. As the space between us expands, I find myself missing your sweet chubby baby cheeks more and more while I watch you fly off on your own leaving a trail of giggles in your wake that make their way to my proud, and sometimes heavy, heart.