Wednesday, May 13, 2009

On the verge

It's easy to forget in the heat of battle those little bits of wisdom that actually make sense to me. My sister's theory about children being fussy, boorish and sleepless among other things just before they acquire a new set of skills rings particularly true this week. Danny has been an absolute joy lately. We've had our moments, but in general, the tantrums have subdued. And looking back on the past few days, I see him making great strides physically, emotionally and mentally.

He pleasantly asks for more "camelope" instead of whining. He's more easily diverted from meltdown back to giggling with just the sing-song sound of my voice. He's more focused and imaginative in his play instead of frustrated and distracted. He meticulously lines up his cars instead of mindlessly scattering them. He's interested in putting puzzles together instead of just taking them apart. He can easily hop onto his three-wheeler instead of struggling to get his leg over. He can swing from the bars on the playground. I could tell a dozen stories about his little world. There's so much to observe, measure and compare against the Danny of just two weeks ago.

The Danny of two weeks ago was throwing tantrums at the drop of a hat, especially at bedtime. Changes in the routine are making a difference this week. Instead of Curious George and a banana smoothie to wind down, he now plays in the living room with us, drinks his smoothie and then goes up to bed. Prayers are said and a book is read. Finally!! You have no idea how excited I am that he finally is interested in books and puzzles.

The Danny of two weeks ago didn't really express complex emotions like sadness. Today he displayed feelings that I've never seen before. Fiona was listening to a musical toy that was once his. He'd long since forgotten about this toy, or so I thought. Even before he began chanting "Turn it off," his lip began to quiver and tears began to form. I explained gently that I couldn't turn it off, it just stopped singing when it was done. He then took the toy and put in the closet and said "Put back." I pulled him up on my lap and hugged him. My guess is that he remembers when that toy was in his crib, the crib that Fiona now occupies.

Boy, I've got a lot to say lately. That's surprising since I'm just coming off another one of Fiona's non-stop nursing growth spurts. She, too, is on the verge. Fiona is a 6 month old trapped in a 3 month old's body. She wants to move, stand up, sit up, roll around, basically be in any position but on her back. I don't remember Danny being as frustrated at the limited mobility. She is so much bigger than Danny was and so much hungrier, it seems. I'm literally counting the days until I can introduce her to some solid food. She's starting to reach for food on my plate and watches us all intently at dinner time. She's been very fussy today, so much so that I finally just put her down, walked out of the house and sat on our garden patio (don't worry, my husband was home).

Good night.

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