There is a fair-haired and very mischievous little elf that wanders around our garden, scouring it for pink and purple wildflowers, stopping now and again to pluck off a perfect bloom. He collects them and offers the posey to me with a resounding “Mamaaaa…Love Flowers. Here go!” Just like that, I could care less about whether not he picks every poppy, daisy or gilia. I should be cringing, but there would be no point. There is something so endearing about a toddler discovering the world around him, and developing a sense of appreciation for those very things that adorn our everyday lives. “We can add them to our flower press,” I tell him, and then he brings me all the ones he can find. Always purple first — it is, afterall, my favourite colour, and if Reed is anything he is a very astute young man who knows his mama’s daily routine and aesthetic tastes fairly well.
Halfway through his 22nd month, this boy is growing up, and yet still very much our darling baby. Yes, it is true he will cease to be the ‘baby of the family’ in less than 6 weeks, but then again, all of our children are still very much our babies —no matter how old they get. He is quick as a bunny, a budding Picasso who draws and adorns walls/paper/coffee tables with very deliberate and concentrated markings. Reed even requires a notebook and pens in the car, and once he’s done, lets his big sister or brother help him ‘sign’ his name on his finished masterpiece.
If you have something, well he’d like it very much please, especially if they are scissors, batteries or dvd discs he can toss like a frisbee. Is that a tabletop I can clear off with one swipe of my arm? Why yes. Do go ahead and throw absolutely everything you can find on the floor, and then get up on top of a too-high surface, shake your naked tushie, and tap dance. By all means!
We do give in to assuage him to avoid that throwing-back-your-head thing our children have seemed to do as toddlers when things aren’t quite going to plan. Grant and I will choose avoiding injuries over ‘discipline’ and ‘making a point’ any day of the week. As I have touched on previously, we practice attachment-style parenting which lends to a very natural, emotional sense of security for the child, but also develops independence and trust. Luckily, for now he is very easily brought out of his itty-bitty tantrums (thankfully!) and still eats, takes bubble baths and nurses with great gusto. He calls himself “Me Me” most of the time (but will answer to a huge variety of nicknames we’ve got for him, from ‘Pas en tout’ to ‘Toodles’). He’s recently started saying his own name, which is positively the sweetest thing; my heart simply melts.
Reed Anders: you have us constantly in awe of what a dear, dear soul you are. You are a bright light… a shining, wide-eyed, pursed-pouty-lips totally inquisitive boy who wants to do everything we are doing, see everything as we see it, and tell us about it all in an unending stream of delightful toddler banter. Flooding the bathroom and pulling the cat’s tail..? Getting your parents up at 3am so you can eat cereal bars and play? Not exactly your best choices, but we’ve all got a little bluster in us, haven’t we? Let’s roll with it.