Archive for the 'Letters' Category

Two

Dear Baby Eirinn,

You are two.  My God, you’re two.  Two years ago today, I gave birth to you with Daddy by my side, all your grandparents in the waiting room, and Ellen DeGeneres on the tv.  Not that I was watching, the choice of programming was all your father and the doctor’s idea.  I was too busy, you know, doing the required birthing activities.  Two years may sound like a long time, but I can still smell the hospital smell, hear the hospital sounds, and envision the hospital room perfectly.  Especially the fold out instrument of torture chair your Daddy had to sleep in while I laboured away all night.  Kind of a fair trade, if you ask me.

One was an unbelievable year for you.  When I think of all you have learned and how much you’ve grown and who you now are, I can barely recognize that One and Two are the same Eirinn.  One year old you still toddled cautiously, spoke only a few English words but babbled on in bab-ese, and was as bald as a jaybird (nearly).  Two year old you runs as much as humanly possible, is fluent in English (there are just some words you haven’t tried yet) but with a strong toddler accent (which sounds like a mix of Irish and Brooklyn), and you are currently working on a full head of hair (“working on” being the operative phrase).  You know the alphabet (the song, not the letters), can count from 1 to 16 (with the exception of 13, 14, and 15, which are all 14 to you), can dress yourself in your outerwear, and can throw a temper tantrum like nobody’s business.

Leading up to two, you mastered sentences and are now telling us stories and relaying them in paragraph form.  You are learning about cause and effect, action and consequence, crime and punishment.  You are learning about these things but you have yet to allow such concepts to stick.

Skills we are working on, in a very non-boot camp type way:

  • Colours.  Some days you know them, some days you don’t.  I think you know them perfectly and are just messing with Mommy and Daddy.  Maintain control by allowing the adults to believe they are still smarter than the kid.  Smart.  I like it.
  • Potty training.  We’re still hoping against hope that you’ll show some sort of interest in the going diaper-free soon.  You’ll sit on the potty just long enough to warm your bum then it’s off to see how much toilet paper you can fire off the roll onto the floor before Mommy loses her cool.

And that’s about it.  I have taken a new laid back approach to my parenting philosophy (not that I’m laid back, I can throw my own temper tantrums too you know, but my philosophy is laid back).  We’re not pushing much onto you right now.  You are ahead of the pack developmentally and you are still above average physically, so we’re not worried about how you learn and how much you are willing to learn.  We also know that when you are ready to move forward with certain skills (*cough* peeing and pooping the proper receptacle *cough*), you’ll let us know.  We just hope you’re ready before June when the number of daily dirty diapers will increase exponentially.  We’re just saying, if you’re looking for the perfect Mother’s Day present, that would be it.

Two has a ‘tude.  Because you know everything, of course.  You know everything and you should be able to do everything and who are we to try to tell you otherwise.  This is mostly frustrating, but occasionally amusing.  Especially when you try to assert yourself but mispronounce just enough of the words to sound adorable instead of mean.  For example.  One of your most frequently used phrases is ‘I don’t like it anymore’ except you pronounce it ‘My don’t yike it neny-MORE.’  I’m sorry for laughing.  I know you were trying to be authoritative.

You don’t like it anymore because you don’t like anything anymore.  Well, anything that involves consuming any sort of mineral or nutrient.  Food can be rather offensive to you.  Unless it can be tagged “snack.”  Then it’s cool.  But if it’s only label is “meal”, then it’s a non-starter.  Even if you were perfectly content eating it, say, a week ago.  Or even ten minutes ago.  If it’s offered to you under the guise of “meal” then “my don’t yike it neny-MORE.”  Except for breakfast.  Like me, you eat 90% of your daily recommended caloric intake before noon. 

Two is also unbearably sweet.  Cavity-causing.  You often tell us you love us (‘My lawb Daddy!’) without prompting.  And your hugs have improved tremendously.  They used to be a simple lean in with your head and the accompanying ‘aw’.  Now they are a simple lean in with your head and the accompanying ‘aw’, but they last much longer.  You greet us enthusiastically, with hugs and kisses and lawb, making us feel like we’ve done something right in this parenting biz and also letting us forget the aforementioned ‘tude.

I’ll miss One.  You were still a baby for One.  But Two will be fun (please God, let Two be fun) with your better grasp on language and proper behaviour (better, not perfect).  Because now you are officially a Big Girl, growing and learning everyday.  We’re about to get your Big Girl Room ready with a Big Girl Bed and your own mirror and everything. 

But when we sneak into your nursery at night, to make sure you’re all tucked in safe and snug in your crib with your soother where it belongs and your two ah-lankies by your side, you’re still our little baby.  Our Pumpkin.  And that, that won’t change no matter how Big a Girl you are.

Love Mommy and Daddy

ps — Sorry about the length.  I know Two instantly transforms your attention span to that of a gnat.  If I lost you somewhere around Ellen DeGeneres, skip down to the ‘Love Mommy and Daddy’ part.  It’s the only part that matters anyway.

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Dear Baby Eirinn

Dear Baby Eirinn,

At 22 months, you have become less “Baby” and more “Toddler”.  Even “Little Girl”, sometimes.  You are older than your years almost two years and it’s making me forget what you were like as an immobile, incoherent, helpless infant.  This maturity is an endless source of pride for your Daddy and I.  We can’t help but brag about you, even to each other. 

You have so many talents and so much knowledge, I’d be afraid to list them for fear of forgetting some of the most important.  But the most recent, and “in progress”, development is your grasp on colours.  Your response to the question “what colour is this?” is still “blue” every time and without fail, but you have one puzzle that is quickly changing your opinion that every colour is blue.  You match the coloured fish to the matching coloured word with no effort at all, and when asked what colour each fish is, you know.  You know every time.  Sometimes I think you just tell us all the colours are blue because you think it’s funny.  Make these silly grown ups believe they’re smarter than you so they won’t make you get a job and pay rent.  Smooth.

You now turn everything into a rule.  And you are very strict.  You shake your head, wag your index finger, and repeat what we’ve told you in that sing-songy voice that oozes authority.

For example.  Bugba has a step ladder.  When you see the step ladder, you look at us, wag your finger, furrow your brow, and say “No climb a ladder.”  And we don’t because you said so.

You are becoming more and more affectionate.  With me.  With everyone else you are becoming more and more easy to trick into being more affectionate.  Without asking, totally unprovoked, and on more than one occasion, you have told me “I love you, Mommy.”  If that wasn’t enough to turn this Vulcan into a blubbering pile of running mascara and snotty Kleenex, your toddler accent is.  “Ah Laaaaawb You, Mommy.”

You also comfort me when I’m sad or feeling sick.  You’ll ask me your usual “What doin’, Mommy?” and if I say “crying” or “I feel sick, baby” you come to me and pet my arm with a worried look and say “it’s ok, Mommy.”  Of course, my “crying” is fake because you did something like wouldn’t do what you’re told.  But the fact that you are remorseful and comfort me more than makes up for it.

We’ve started to say “Daddy will be mad at you” (or “Papa” if you’re not at home) when you do something you know you’re aren’t supposed to be doing.  And you know this is coming.  Sometimes you ask if Daddy’s going to be mad at you.  The answer is usually yes.  Especially when you put your feet on the dinner table.  I often retract this promise when you say “No Daddy mad at you”, in a soft voice with a pout. 

You have a new brother or sister on the way, but it’s too early for you to know this.  I won’t burdon you with the fact that life as you know it is now over until much closer to D-Day.  It will be different, that’s for sure, but I hope good-different.  I hope you find yourself a friend out of the new little one.  One that you can teach all your talents and knowledge.  One you can lay down the law to (with Mommy and Daddy’s help, of course).  One you can kiss and hug and Laaawb.  One you can comfort.

Mommy and Daddy are going to be busier once baby #2 arrives.  We are going to be tired, and we are going to be occupied sometimes with someone who isn’t you.  For this adjustment that you never asked for, I’m sorry.  But it will get better.  When the baby is older and tougher and can play and keep up with your bountiful energy, he or she will be fun and you’ll be glad we decided to have him or her for you.

And know this.  Know that you will always be our Baby Eirinn.  Know that we will make time for just you.  Know that we will love you endlessly, unconditionally.

Because you are our Pumpkin and we laaawb you, too.

Mommy and Daddy

Water under the bridge

Dear Eirinn,

I’m sorry for being a Mrs. Mommy-Grumpy-Pants last week.  I’m a little out of practice in being a full-time parent, and I know you missed the kids at Bugba’s house.  I hope you can forgive me and we can still be friends.

And it really wasn’t all my fault, you know.  You could have gone a little easier on me, what with the yelling and the screaming and the unreasonable and impossible demands.  You really know how to make a difficult situation even worse, don’t you?

Anyway, water under the bridge.  Lesson learned.  Next year we will plan our vacation much better.  Only one week at a time and Bugba is not allowed to go anywhere.  A-N-Y-W-H-E-R-E (do you hear that, Bugba?).

Love your fully recovered and totally rejuvenated mom.

p.s. I take your new found love of hugs and kisses as your way of apologizing to me for your unruly behaviour.  And I forgive you.

You’re really weird

Dear Pumpernickle Bread,

Have you ever noticed that mommy and daddy don’t stand on tables?  That’s because it’s weird and dangerous.  You shouldn’t do that.  At least until you are tall enough.  I don’t know how tall ‘tall enough’ is, but you’re not there yet, so could you ease up on the mountain climbing?

And while I’m asking for favours, would it be possible for you to stop putting everything in your mouth?  You aren’t teething and it’s a little gross and, again, weird. And unsanitary.  You’re going to get lock-jaw.  And when you do, I’m going to be right there to say ‘I told you so’.

I know you are a monkey trapped in a little girl’s body, but do you think you could try to fit in with us ‘humans’ a little harder?  Thanks.  The second you start flinging your diaper at us, I’m shipping you off to the zoo.  I’m serious, I’ll do it.

Love, your befuddled mother.

The louder you get, the less I sympathize.

Dear Eirinn,

Next time you want to finger paint the couch with raspberry jam, ask your father.  He’ll say no, too.  And throwing yourself onto the floor, kicking your legs, and screaming like a banshee won’t work with him either.

Jam is for toast, not furniture.

Love, your mom.  The boss. (Remember that.)

Why won’t you sleep???

Dear Eirinn,

Why don’t you like sleeping?  Your daddy and I love to sleep.  We like sleeping in.  We like naps (well I do).  We like sleeping all the way through the night.  We like going to sleep. 

What’s your deal?  You wake up early, have to be coddled and conned into taking naps, wake up at least once during the night, and you are currently in your crib screaming because you won’t go to sleep.  What will it take?  Money?  How much do you need?  What about a puppy?  Or a monkey?  Drugs?  What ever it is, you got it.

Come on, baby.  Sleeping’s all the rage.  All the cool kids are doing it.  Just ask your bbff (best baby friend forever), Lucy.

Love your very tired mommy and daddy.

Dear Baby Eirinn,

My beautiful girl.  Beautiful blonde curls, smiling Irish eyes.  Your infectious laugh and generous nature.  I love you with all my heart and with everything I am.  This blog is for you, about you, and because of you.