Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Growing Pains

What is it about two year olds?  

How quickly our sweet, cuddly, easy to please babies transform into demanding
and opinionated toddlers.  The two year old version of Brees knows what she wants and 
works really hard to communicate her needs to you, sometimes in a not so nice sort of 
way.    She often speaks of herself as though she is the supreme ruler of our household, 
saying things like, "No, Mama!  Brees go outside!  Brees no go night night!" or "No, no!  That 
is Brees' cup!  Sissy no touch Bree's cup!".  Then she gives you the look: the one that says 
"If you cross me, you will suffer!!".
We try really hard to just be patient with our little dictator, understanding that so much of
her frustration lies in the fact that she can not efficiently communicate her emotions and
so she lashes out instead.  We try to redirect her attention when she gets upset and
unruly, even when this means literally having to pick her up, limbs flailing everywhere,
and carrying her to another room.  I try to keep my voice calm, quiet, and soothing
even though I am usually drowned out by the sounds of her "NOOOOOOO!!".  I remind
myself to lock up the crayons for good every time I find new drawings on the wall courtesy
of my little Picaso.  Shawn builds new barricades weekly to keep her off the staircase,
but somehow our little MacGyver finds another way up.  She is determined and stubborn,
just like her parents, and she makes us both laugh and cry with her antics.
But, eventually, she always gives in, raising her little arms and reaching for me, "Hold
Brees, Mama!".  And I pick her up, hold her close, and hum "Twinkle Twinkle", her
favorite song, into her ear.  And she gives in, forgetting whatever it was she was
screaming about.  I have to hand it to her: though she can be a drama queen, she gets
over things really quickly.  Before we know it, she's up and about and playing again, the
tears and heartache gone and forgotten.  She's back to being her sweet and cuddly self,
sharing and being a kind and loving girl.  And I hold onto those moments and let them carry
me through the tantrums.  I remind myself that we all have bad days, bad hours, bad
minutes.  Life as a two year old can be tough as our little toddler attempts to navigate the
world and make her mark along the way.  But we love her so much, it makes all the
"terrible" times pass pretty quickly. 
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Nessa Bixler said...

Three is a funny (tough) age too. They get more self reliant but at the same time they want to do more things "all by themselves!" These are really sweet photos. Those hugs make all the difference.

Hilary@MooHooVille said...

it is amazing how quickly they bounce between exorcist-angry to cuddlebugs, isn't it? i am always floored by how frustrated i can be one moment, and then mere seconds later i'm back to snuggles & songs & thinking that toddlerhood is the best ever!

Kelley said...

I love those sweet mama cuddle pictures..ugh..so adorable..especially how she's all content sucking her thumb. But man, toddlers. Brixton can't talk yet. Thank God. Soon enough..

Kate said...

Erick and I had the realization the other day, that so often we're telling Sofia "no" because she is still learning and testing the boundaries of the world around her... (often getting her into circumstances where she might get hurt). It's our job to teach what's right from wrong/safe from fun, but it seems they pick up on the "no!" a lot more than they do the "yay! good job!" This whole toddler-hood is a completely new venture for us, and it has definitely been a challenging, yet fun ride. ;)

Lucy The Valiant said...

yep, yep! I'm on the same page over here with my sassy pants two year old. She's so fiesty!

Olivia said...

Fiesty is right! What a personality they have at this age, right?!

Olivia said...

Oh, we feel the same way! Some days it feels like you've barely had time to enjoy your kids because you've been so busy keeping them out of trouble! But they feel the love, no matter what. It's a journey and a beautiful one at that!

Olivia said...

She is such a little thumb sucker, we can barely pry it out of her mouth!! Except for when she's telling us "NO!" of course:)

Olivia said...

Viking warrior: EXACTLY.

Olivia said...

Oh, I remember the "all by myself" phase! Isabelle was so independent! I can only imagine that Brees will be the same!