You turned two last month, and it's like you know what that means. It's as if you understand the phrase "terrible twos" and feel like you have some sort of expectation to live up to. The screaming, the tantrums, the disobedience . . . you're testing every boundary and running me ragged.
On the flip side, you're doing so many fun new things, too. This morning, you started crawling on your hands and knees and panting. I gave you a puzzled look and you just grinned from ear to ear and said, "doggy." I thought it was super cute until your Dad told me that you tried to bite his ankle.
I love it when you do something fun or achieve something new and pump your fist and exclaim "YESHHH!". . . just like your brother. I crack up every time you finish a snack, because you always lift up your shirt and say, "Mama! Betty!" Translation: "Mom, my food's all in my belly."
You like to tease us by sticking your thumbs in your ears, wiggling your fingers and saying, "Na na boo boo." You love to sing, and even when you can only pick up on one or two words of a song, you sing those words with enough gusto to make up for all of the words that you don't know. I love hearing you exclaim "MO-NING!" (Good morning!) each morning. No matter how little sleep I'm running on, it brightens my day.
You're incredibly active and have very little fear. You love to jump off of things and usually exclaim "COOOL!" when you land . . . whether you land on your feet or back side. You climb, explore, dig, gallop, run and play harder than any kid I've met. You have sustained more injuries than any other toddler I've encountered. I'm having trouble remembering what you look like without a fat lip and two year old pictures have been delayed because of it. You are incredibly resilient. I know that when I hear you cry hard over a fall or spill that I need to come quickly because it's probably more than just a bump or a scrape.
You love playing with trains, moreso setting up the track for them to run on. Actually, I think your favorite part might be taking the full tub of train parts and pieces and dumping the entire contents on the ground, because you giggle with delight every time you do it. While you and Jack fight, oh, every 30 seconds or so when you're playing with the train set, it's one of your favorite things to do with him. After your nap this afternoon, I asked if you wanted to play with the train set. But Jack wasn't home and you just shook your head and said, "No. Jack, helpee." which I understood to mean, "Not unless Jack's here to help me."
Have I mentioned how infectious your laugh is? You have this contagious, deep chuckle that is most often elicited by your dad's antics. He tickles and wrestles with you in ways that make you giggle uncontrollably and honestly? I don't think anyone could hear it and not smile right along with you. I normally have to leave whatever I'm doing to go watch, because there are few sights and sounds better than your dad making you laugh.
You and Jack share a room now, and with that change, your excellent sleep habits have gone right out the window. It takes a lot of time to get you settled down and you know EXACTLY which buttons to push to get Jack irritated and prevent him from sleeping. I know it'll take time, but I think you two will eventually love sharing a room. Eventually.
You love playing with our phones and watching videos from the summer and looking at pictures of yourself. You even show us the photos and tell us what they are as if we've never seen them before. You play games on the phone and the ipad "or as you refer to it . . . the "ipat."
I love it that you are always so thrilled to see me. Whether I'm gone for 10 minutes or all day, you run to me and hug me tightly whenever I return. I don't think a single one of these moments passes without me wondering how long it will last.
So, I'll deal with the tantrums and the excruciatingly high-pitched screams because I know that it's just a small piece of the larger picture that makes up who you are and who you're becoming, and you are so special to me, just the way you are.