As your mother, I’d like to request that you stop trying to kill me. Seriously. This has been quite a month. As you can see by the numerical month, you are about to be a Two Year Old. You’ve spent the better part of the month giving us a sneak preview of this magical time in a toddler’s life – and we are not amused.
There has been much whining, fussing, hitting and foot stomping the past few weeks. Changing your diaper has become a wrestling match the WWF ought to record as a case study. There is no eating of meat, chicken or fish – or for that matter any food that just seems weird to you. You are currently surviving on yogurt, yogurt snacks, cheese and any number of a variety of fruit cups. Once your favorite, pasta is now dead to you. You only drink water if I mix a smidgen of orange Gatorade into it to make it taste better.
Taking all the above into account, you seemed to be on the brink of some kind of developmental frustration over the past few weeks, so I decided to test a few things out to see if you would, indeed, rise to the challenge. I’d also like to add that all of the following happened within one week. Make a note of it.
First, Daddy and I wrestled with whether or not we should move you out of your crib. You weren’t actively trying to climb out, but it just seemed like you were outgrowing it. We worried, because you room is at the top of the stairs, that you might try to climb out and jimmy the babygate no one is impressed with and end up on the stairs in the middle of the night. On the other hand, we worried that, lacking a crib/baby defense, you’d try to climb the gate for your room and, yet again, end up on the stairs. Turns out you love your toddler bed. You were more bothered by the gate keeping you in your room than losing the crib. You even waved goodbye to it as I rolled it out.
That mild headache you have continuously throughout the day is a result of me bumping your head on the top of the car as I try valiantly to lift you into your carseat that you were sadly growing too big and too tiresome for. So, off to Target we went to get you a brand new, non-five-point-harness booster seat “just like Sissy’s”. You loved it instantly and beamed from the backseat pointing back and forth to Swimmy’s seat and yours in comparison. Yes, my love, you are a Big Boy.
And finally, you’ve had a mild milk allergy since you were born. The pedicatrician said you would one day grow out of it and to try periodically to switch you from soy milk to regular milk and see how it goes. Everything was great for about four days – then your eczema showed up again. FAIL.
Well, two outta three ain’t bad.
This month you started swimming lessons (which you love), camp (you also love) and went on a trip to Galveston with the family and Dodi & Zayde. You had a ball. You aren’t a fan of the beach and sand, but you adored the pool You wanted to do everything sissy was doing – or not doing. You looked longingly at the big water slide at the hotel pool, but you weren’t tall enough to ride it. That ended well. It’s still a little hard to travel with you because of your need to nap, but you made some great memories with your Dodi & Zayde this trip – and that’s worth all the frustration.
Your speech and language are growing every week. You are now using two word phrases fairly regularly and are working so hard on gathering new words every day. It all started in the ball pit at your speech therapy class. You wanted me in the pit with you. So…”Mommy in!” And there it was. A little BenjaMoment. You got applause.
Your favorite thing to do is animal sounds. One night you were sitting next to me quietly saying them as you watched a Baby Einstein DVD about the farm. A cow came on the screen and to yourself you said, “MMMMM.” Then a sheep came on and you turned your head to my right ear and screamed, “BAAAAAAAA!!!!!!!!” I yelped and screamed, “OH, MY G-D!” it was so loud it hurt my ear. Then you smiled at me and said, “Ba.” Quietly.
Right. A Sheep. A QUIET G-DAMMNED SHEEP.
You love to play outside and are unbelievably physically coordinated. You have figured out how to ride a three-wheeled scooter that was your sister’s. You on a bright pink Barbie scooter is quite a sight. In the blink of an eye you are up and on top of anything you can climb on – a shocking revelation to your camp counselors on day one.
You love to feed the ducks. The ducks now know our house we feed them so much and nothing tickles you more than to see them come wandering up our driveway. The dog feels differently, but she apparently doesn’t get a vote.
Oh, Benjamin. Your energy for this world is boundless. I’ve never seen anyone eat life the way you do. As many mental images as I have of you running towards me with your arms outstretched, I have as many watching your blonde curls bounce in the sunlight as you run the other direction trying to grab the next piece of adventure. Thanks for letting me be a part of it, but, if you don’t mind, let’s stop and rest together every now and then.