Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Notes On BabyG

Who is, by the way, no longer a baby. She is a full blown, prancing, squawking, bluffing, bossing bundle of toddlerhood. And toddlerhood is an incredible thing – I realize now that the old doctors and aunties who write books about how to be parents were not even slightly exaggerating when they talked about the extraordinary smarty-pantsedness of these little tykes. In fact, I swear to moss and emeralds and all things pretty and green that if you put your ear to my baby girl’s ear the same way you’d put your ear to a seashell, you will actually hear the gurgling and bubbling of rapidly developing human brain. (Unfortunately you won’t be able to test this fact since my baby would bite, claw, climb, stuff an elbow inside of, yank the hair above, or kiss your ear long before it reached her ear for verification.)

Proof? In just the last few days I taught her to kick! Kick! Kick! in the pool. She's mastered the difference between her arm and her elbow. We’ve taught her to sleep without breastfeeding, to carry her potty to the toilet after she’s gone (she’s not ready to dump…) A chasing game I improvised the other day has been transformed, by her, into this: she: pulling a little ball toy behind her; Mommy or Daddy: follows her while pushing the ‘popper’ toy. Sounds harmless but it means hours of minutes ‘chasing’ the baby from room to room, in a circular fashion. The whole time we have to shout: Weeeee! Weeeee! Weeeee! And if we stop, she drops her toys and shrieks! (The twos are coming on strong)

More charmingly, I taught her to open her eyes and to close her eyes last night, in hopes it’d help when it was bedtime. Only it backfired, because she makes this hilarious effort at closing the eyes. Instead of just letting her eyelids fall normally, she expends all this effort and ends up in this fluttering eyelid state. (It reminds me of that exercise where you sit in a pretend chair, and your muscles shake and buckle, and your body’s saying: don’t tell me you’ve gone and forgotten how to sit down on the floor, because if this is the best you can do, we’re in a hell of a lot of trouble…)


Anonymous said...

Wow! Toddlerdom. Do you guys sign at all with her? My friend Michele signs with her two year old and I was amazed at how calm their interactions were. She told me that signing helps alleviate the "terrible twos." I have no idea whether it's her kid's nature or if signing actually works, but it's a pretty interesting concept. xxxxoooo, Julie

Sonia said...

Great to get these updates on babyG (and the rest of the family as well). Really enjoyed your last post on the dilemma between work and family life. Someone once told me that you only get one chance to bring up a child well so dont screw it up, it has always helped me keep perspective when other stuff gets in the way. You're both mindful parents- thats all that a child could ask for. Good Luck!

cake said...

when we tell cosmo to close his eyes, he clasps them shut really really tight, which of course, ends up cracking me up. then he is giggling too, which defeats the whole point of asking him to close his eyes in the first place (getting him to begin to fall asleep). but what fun. he has become an expert at cracking me up at bedtime. i can recall doing that to my mom too. i loved to hear her laugh, maybe cosmo like that too.

i really like your writing in this post, especially the first part. very original, lyrical, and it fills my mind with beautiful images of the ever fascinating babyG.

cake said...

by the way, what julie wrote about signing is really interesting to me. i had not heard that. signing has really helped with cosmo since he has been a little slower than babyG on verbal development. it seemed to me that you didn't really need signs much, since she would try so many words. now cosmo signs and speaks, but the signs still seem to be important to him, and he makes up new ones all the time. it eases frustration for sure. cosmo is a relatively calm toddler, but i suspect this has more do do with his general disposition than with signing. still though, i do find it interesting to think about.