Yesterday you turned 19 months old! You have changed and grown in so many ways this past month that it makes my head spin.
Speaking of heads – I’m a little worried that you’re going to get a fat head because you’re on the cover The Good Life magazine that just came out! I wrote a little guest column about how we’re trying to raise you as an outdoorsy boy and there are a couple of pictures of you skiing, mountain biking and playing in the snow. So if you turn out to be a video game addicted couch potato, it is not for lack of trying. WE DID OUR PART.
Little Bear, you are an absolute riot! You’re like a really loud tank with an irresistible grin. Due to your incessant eating, (I think we might start calling you Hoover or Kirby) you’re about as wide as you are tall, and you feel like you’re made of lead. I love seeing moms who have delicate little toddlers pick you up. The look of surprise on their face as they strain to straighten up is kind of hilarious. Dude, you’re solid. And I love every ounce of you.
At the beginning of the month we were snowshoeing and by the end of the month we were hiking the green foothills. Spring has sprung! Which led to your discovery of the thrill of mud puddle stomping. You now have the stamina to walk to our nearby park to play on the swings (which make you giggle, without fail) and most afternoons we walk a couple blocks to meet Dad on his way home from work. You love helping him “drive” the truck through our parking lot. Anything with a steering wheel absolutely delights you.
The big news is that your front teeth are finally coming in! As you know, I loved that you were my fanged little vampire – so fitting since your in utero nickname was “Madness the Vampire.” But your big toothy grin is so contagious that I kind of like the new additions.
It seems like you learn a new word every day and you’re putting together two-word sentences. There is a constant stream of chatter from you at all times and you get so frustrated with me when I don’t understand what you’re saying. You’ll repeat it over and over again, each time more insistently, and I kind of expect you to put your hands on your hips, stamp your foot and shout, “Woman! Clean the wax out of your ears because I am trying to tell you something Very Important and you’re missing it!”
You love to throw things and you have one heck of an arm. I feel like I’m playing dodge ball all day, only the ball is a piece of firewood or a metal car. In your crib you have a little stuffed seahorse that glows and plays music. You’ve had it since you were tiny and we always turn it on (by pressing its belly) when we put you to bed. You have taken over that job, but you turn it on with your forehead – head-butting it over and over like a raging bull. I’m not gonna lie, it’s a little disturbing at times.
Aside from food, animals and music are your favorite things. You pull stuffed animals off of store shelves and lay on top of them, hugging them fiercely. People walk by, trying not to make eye contact with the mom of the kid who is humping toys in the middle of the aisle. Awkward. The petting zoo at Smallwoods makes you squeal with delight as you run from animal to animal. You’re still a little scared of the geese.
You gave up your bottles cold turkey when you turned 18 months. It wasn’t your idea, but it didn’t seem to faze you at all. However, we also took away your pacifier during the day and THAT was unfun for the whole family, and probably the neighbors. You get your pacifier only when you’re in your crib, but the cold hard truth is that we’re going to take away that luxury soon. I should probably send out an apology note and earplugs to all of the neighbors a few days in advance. You’ve been on breathing treatments again this month, but we hope that this spring will bring good health to the whole family.
The best part about the last month? You say “thank you” and you follow directions. If I tell you to get your coat or pick out a book, YOU DO IT. This is miraculous in my world. It gives me hope that at some point, we’ll actually be able to understand each other. Although, I keep thinking the same thing about your dad and me, and it still hasn’t happened. Maybe I’m jumping to conclusions.
Little Bear, it is an absolute honor to watch you grow and learn. I grow and learn from you. You make me laugh (and swear like it’s my part-time job) on a daily basis. The old saying is true; having a child is like letting your heart walk around outside your body every day. I love you with every fiber of my being and I’m so grateful for our constantly evolving relationship.