Photo: These photos used to be of little babies… doing baby things. What… what happened?
This is my baby, the first one I birthed, the one who I started this scary road of motherhood with.
“Ew Mommy! I don’t like kisses! I don’t like mommy kisses!”
This baby. This baby who just wiped all of my kisses off of his 3-year-old cheeks.
“But I’m gonna give you kisses!”
This child who looks puzzled and sad if I wipe his kisses off of my cheek.
“Nooo! You can’t do that!”
And then he gives me one more.
So when I say, “well that’s just fine. Because I like your kisses, little sir.”
He smiles and giggles. “Well, I don’t like your kisses, Mommy!” Then he runs away.
Who is this child now? Where did he come from? Where is he going? And who decides they hate their Mama’s kisses at age 3???
This child who used to be so easy to change, such a small thing on our little changing table… now he’s taking his diaper off during nap time and wetting the damn bed. He’s in between potty and diaper. “I don’t like the diaper,” he implored yesterday at the end of nap when I got him up. Everything from the blanket to the stuffies was just gross. “I don’t like it! It doesn’t feel good!”
“So then use the potty, sir. If you use the potty, you don’t have to wear the big bad diaper.”
“No! I don’t like the potty!”
Potty Purgatory. How lovely.
I really cannot believe how intense and incredible Three is. I see little glimpses of the brilliance of childhood when I watch him work on a problem or discover something new, or when I listen to him attempt to reason. This child is reasoning, you guys. What? I hear him use his language to articulate the simplest concepts and I’m blown away. Who is this little somebody? The problem is that these glimpses are so utterly short lived. It can be a flash as quick at 10 minutes. He’s that perfect little dude that I’ve been working so hard on and then the next thing you know, we’re back to tantrum hell all over again. The difference between anger at 2 and anger at 3 is that right now, his anger can be remembered. A consequence can be handed down today (like the removal of a toy) and he’ll remember it and be pissed tomorrow. It makes for these protracted conflicts for no apparent reason. It’s exhausting!
But then the sweetness will re-emerge! We went to the grocery store today and my child was counting the potatoes and helping me find fresh produce.
“I’m your sous chef!”
“Being a sous chef means knowing which head of romaine is the best looking. Can you help me pick the best romaine?”
“Yes, you’re right. It is! That’s what it means! I will help you!”
My child knows the difference between red-leaf lettuce and romaine. He can spot a good tomato and a bad one. He knows the difference between a peach and a plum, and he learned how to choose a ripe pineapple today. Yeah, he jumped around and got in the way sometimes, and he got a little distracted by the candy in the check-out line… but this child… Three is just amazing.
And while I know that this thing about not liking Mommy kisses is a game that he’s playing… it makes me sad all the same… just a little bit. As I’ve written before, Ursa Major has always been running away from me. He crawled at 8 months so that he could chase his father. He walked by 10 months because crawling was just not fast enough (to chase his father). He turns more and more into his father every day. Just this weekend, he and his father sat on the front yard, coloring in the walking path with sidewalk chalk, Ursa Minor came and slashed through both of their creations and… I swear to God… the reactions were the same, the facial expressions were the same… it was just… they are absolutely the same soul. There isn’t an ounce of me that child, I swear!
And while Minor is growing up just as fast, he’s still my cuddly one, my little baby. Major is off to the races. And he’s leaving me behind. I hope he’ll remain my sous chef for a little longer, and I hope he hears my voice in his head when he’s far away from me some day in the future. I recognize that the pulling away is normal… healthy. But Lord, it’s still a sad thing, too.
Then again, he seems to know exactly where I am when he wants something. He’s all to happy to use his lovely vocabulary to tell me when he wants something! What’s up with that??
Good problems to have. Annoying, but good.
Seriously, though, when does school start again?
The car has a loose wire somewhere. No need for a new transmission, but can’t get it fixed until Thursday. Like any man, The Husband has given me very cryptic messages about whether or not the car is actually in shape for driving. “Just don’t drive it outside of town…” Uh, ok, but I have to drive into the city for that big lead appointment…? “Oh, I think you’ll be ok to do that…” But… that requires a major highway and not very slow driving…? “I mean, just don’t push her, you know? Just be cool about it…” So, uh, can I take the car tonight to go knitting with friends after bedtime? “Only use the car if you absolutely need to…”
Alright bro. Alright.
So, holding my breath until Thursday.
After the mechanic told us that this “should” be a $200 fix, not as big a deal as we thought, we high-fived each other and felt awesome. The pendulum is swinging back in our favor! More good news than bad news! Woo to the hoo!
Then our television died.
That television lived through four moves in 6 years an then it’s gonna die unceremoniously on our wall. Come on! I’m not totally without: We have a standard-def TV in the kitchen so I can watch the news while I cook, and we have a hand-me-down TV in the master bedroom that I use to watch TV in the evenings while I knit. The one that died is the first TV we ever bought (and, I might add, one of the few things in this house that we have actually bought… not a handmedown or a second-hand find!) and it’s in the living room. Translation: The TV for the boys. All of the kid shows are on that DVR and it’s always tuned to afternoon cartoons while I’m cooking dinner. Otherwise, it would be chaos around here. So when I prepare dinner and the boys ask for Julius Jr and I can’t deliver, I’m not quite sure what’s going to happen.
And did I mention that it’s going to rain and storm for the next three days? No escape to the park???
The universe has an interesting sense of humor.
According to my word log, I wrote 9080 words last week. Crazy, huh? Let’s hope I can keep up the productivity! Happy Monday, ya’ll!
(Bloggy note: Sorry I’ve been slouching on the comments lately. Irregular nap times have made my comment reply windows small or non-existent! Even if I don’t reply, I’m reading them! Hope to be better about that this week!)