At this stage in your life, you are a force with which to be reckoned. A little like an F-5 tornado. Your feet are constantly stomping, running, jumping, climbing, dancing. Your arms are constantly reaching, grabbing, poking, hugging. Your mind is constantly absorbing, applying, bending, growing.
Your mood changes like the wind, recompense, no doubt for my naive comment on a friend's daughter, "It's so funny how she goes from tantrum to happy grins like that," not thinking that it is not as funny when switching the order.
You are humbling me by turning me into "That woman". That woman who hasn't brushed her hair today and is plying you with fruit snacks to keep you from shattering the windows at Target with your screams. That woman who takes 30 minutes to prepare to leave the house. That woman who just doesn't have the time or energy for Doggie even though she swore she would make time for her after your arrival. That woman who lets you play at the park with an occasional snot bubble inflating and deflating from your nose. I used to be the girl who sneered at "that woman", and now thanks to you, I AM "that woman". Touche, Nugget.
Daily, I am choosing my battles, trying to help you make your way into civilized society. It was hitting one week, pushing the next, getting you to drink water instead of milk between meals, now it's keeping you from climbing on the bookshelf to reach the TV. It's funny how each stage seems endless but quick as a flash, it's over, and I'm left wondering how to deal with the next challenge, the old battle we waged a distant memory.
I try not to let these battles define your entire toddlerhood and after you are in bed, I think hard about the big grin you gave me when you woke up from your nap, the way you pointed to flowers on a playmate's pants and signed flower to me, your laughter when we played peekaboo, the way you held me so tightly when you fell down at the park and although I was sad that you got hurt, it still felt so good when you held me that way. That's what I'll choose to remember (not the 500 times I pulled you off the bookshelf).
I love you, Nugget.