Just a few days after your 13-month-iversary I took you with me to my first midwife appointment for your new little brother or sister. Everyone was thrilled to see you, especially Amy, the midwife who attended your birth. You showed off your walking skills, wandering around the waiting room, trying to steal water bottles out of the purses of random pregnant ladies, and you toddled around while Linda patiently moved a doppler monitor over me, looking for Rummicub’s heartbeat. When we found it, it was blended with mine in a syncopated rhythm, totally unlike yours, which was always clear and separate from mine. I wonder all the time about how you and Rummicub will be different, especially as your personality continues to grow and change and solidify.
You are intensely observant, and sometimes amazingly patient. You will sit yourself down cross-legged and just watch the scene, waiting to see where you fit in. The other day at the beach, I turned around to find you sitting down patiently at the blanket of another family, watching them like a television. Eventually they gave you some pretzels, which was perhaps your devious plot all along.
In the last week, though, you’ve countered your calm patience with a new tendency toward the temper tantrum. The terrible twos are coming early here at the Weisz house. In the last few days, the following things have evinced blood-curdling screams of agony: putting you down, picking you up, putting you in the stroller, offering you a sippy cup, brushing your teeth, taking the remote out of your hand, and changing your diaper. Your storms of rage are mercifully short-lived, but they are loud, and we are not yet steeled for them.
You are finding your voice, babbling strings of sounds and words that sound convincingly like sentences. Words are coming and going all the time. For a week you were saying “banana” quite clearly, but you’re taking a break from that now. Waving and saying a kind of “hi/bye” sound is making a comeback after a month-long hiatus. For just one day, you made a clear “woof woof” sound when I asked you what sound a doggie makes. A few days ago, when we asked you where your nose is, you actually pointed at your nose for the first time. Our resulting excitement was so infectious, that for the next few days, every time we said “Where’s your nose?” you would start squealing and clapping, skipping over the developmental task right to the celebration.
You are obsessed with pictures of babies, which I hope will translate into some interest in Rummicub. You lurk in the hallway, staring at the section of our polaroid wall where there are lots of pictures of people holding you or other babies, pointing at them and chatting. You love reading our Helen Oxenbury baby books over and over again, surprised and delighted each time those babies all fall down.
Your love of books in general makes me so happy. You often choose books instead of toys, flipping through the pages and pointing at things that interest you. The other night for the first time you chose which book you wanted to read for bedtime, pointing to our new bunny book and vehemently shaking your head when I tried to instead pick up our usual bedtime story.
You love toys, too, and we’re trying to upgrade our toy collection to keep up with your new skills. We recently bought a toy where you hammer wooden balls into little holes with a mallet, and they roll down through a maze to come out at your feet. The first day we had it, you mostly picked the balls up and rolled them across the floor. I had no luck getting you interested in banging them with the mallet, and though we’d have to shelve the toy for another month or two. But then Nana and Papa arrived to babysit, and by the time we got home, they had turned you into a veritable Paul Bunyan of the ball-hammering toy.
You are fascinated by animals, and you have fallen in love with your crib full of stuffed animals, especially a particularly heavy monkey we’ve named Bubbles. You hug bubbles and walk all over the house with him. A few days ago, I took you to the zoo for the first time, and, as I expected, you were overjoyed by the monkeys. At the first window in the primate house, I put you on my shoulders to get a better view, and you squealed and laughed and patted the top of my head.
Here’s to more trips to the zoo, more hammering, more books, and more words to describe your fascination with all of it.
Photo by Rocketlass