Poppyseed is (Almost) 16 Months Old

Please make her stop.

Growing, that is.

This summer has flown by.  It’s probably been one of the most blurry summers I’ve ever had.   We’ve worked, we’ve traveled, we’ve had friends stay with us, we’ve been to stay with friends, we’ve flown across the world, we’ve hosted cousins, the list goes on.  I think we’ve spent 2 weekends of the past 10 in our own home.

And somewhere in those past few months, my baby stopped being a baby.

Just.  Like.  That.

I really do think it happened in Japan.  A month before Japan, she wasn’t even walking.  Then she took those first steps across our kitchen floor toward Oatmeal.  It was as if she’d been rehearsing for weeks in her crib as to show us her new skill only after it had been perfected.  It was a model’s strut, something like 10 steps in a row, without the least bit of wobbling.

At 14 months, I’d have described her as, hmmmm…….

active. sweet. constant.

At almost 16 months, the words I’d choose are:

Sassy. Tornado. Unpredictable.

There are days where I feel like we are doing pretty fantastic as parents.  She is happy and playful, she sleeps well and goes right down for naps.  She marches confidently around the house with her toys and crawls steadily up and down the stairs.  She smiles and claps when she gets put in the car seat, happily waves at everyone in the grocery store while she sits calmly in the basket, and bravely climbs up the slide at the playground.  She is incredibly independent, as proven to me the morning she woke up at 6:30am and we cuddled in my bed until I dozed off.  I woke up over an hour later to her hopping around at the foot of the bed.  She’d crawled off of my (rather tall) bed, gone downstairs, walked straight to the pantry, ransacked a ziploc full of whole walnuts and every spice within reach, eaten said walnuts and tested some curry powder and paprika, and then come back upstairs.  I had no idea she had been on this little kitchen excursion until I went downstairs myself to find walnuts all over the floor, where I immediately thanked God for not giving her a nut allergy.  Yep, this kiddo can be the picture of independence – the kid who I can take to daycare or the church nursery and she barely looks up when I walk away from her.

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And then there are the less-than-independent days. The days where I walk around with a 28lb human permanently stuck to my left hip.  She is suddenly a toddler that screams when I even act as if I may lean her toward the ground.  A child who arches her back and yells at the highest pitch that is possible when I put her in the car.  The kid who repeatedly – repeatedly – slaps me across the face.  If I make a sad face and tell her how unhappy it makes me to get slapped, I get a very sweet kiss.  After a month or so of that tactic not working, I hit her back.  (Judge me if you must.)  She burst into tears, screamed with her mouth WIDE open, and then sniffled with her bottom lip out as far as it could go for the next few minutes.  After a few days of this going on, I drove to the bookstore on one of my work days and scanned about six books on toddler discipline.  Nothing stood out to me other than this sentence from one page of a book I’ve already forgotten:

If you find yourself wondering what your 15-18 month old can comprehend, this equation should help.  Imagine what you think they understand and double it.  Then add some more.  That is, at minimum, what your baby understands.

As for the hitting, I’m still at a loss on that one.

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She has gotten so SO smart.  She’s learning her animal sounds and her numbers.  She LOVES to try to say new words.  The more fun the word, the louder she’ll say it.   And there are so many jibberish phrases that she says over and over again.  I really would do anything to find out what “GAGAGOSH”  or “SCHLEP SCHLEP SAAAA!” means.

I realized this week that she knows her body parts.  I asked her to show me her nose, eyes, head, hands, fingers, feet, toes, belly, and ears.  She knew all of them.  I finally stumped her when I said “Show me your knees.”  She learned that fast.  I guess tomorrow I should start teaching her the medical terms for all of that…. “Show me your cranium…. show me your patella.”  My orthopedic dad will love that.  (Shout out to Sydney!)

I think that the craziest thing is that I just never knew she was “getting it.”  I tell her about animal sounds all the time.  I point to her body parts all the time.  I count all the time.  But when I casually say, “Let’s crack 3 eggs into the bowl…. 1…. 2….” and then she joyfully shouts “Teeeeeee!!!!” I just about drop her.

She "helps" me cook every single day and night.  She will be able to scramble an egg by age 3 and chop an onion at 4 I tell you.

She “helps” me cook every single day and night. She will be able to scramble an egg by age 3 and chop an onion at 4 I tell you.

I can’t believe she isn’t a baby anymore.  It just went by so fast.  Too fast.

Tonight I was in the kitchen when she walked up to Oatmeal and got his attention.  She pulled at her diaper and stared up at him expectantly.  He said, “Do you need to go potty?” and she nodded and walked to the bathroom.  She pushed the lid of the toilet upwards and looked at him until he put the training seat on the toilet.  He placed her on the toilet, and for a moment, she looked relieved.  I stopped cooking and stared at her, wondering if she was literally about to potty train herself in front of my eyes.  She got off the toilet, walked across the room, and peed on the floor.  She then returned to the bathroom, ripped about a half a square of tissue from the roll, wiped herself, and tossed it into the toilet.   So now I’m looking at my calendar trying to figure out when I have three days to potty train her.  Um, when did this all happen?

On one hand, it’s the most amazing and awesome thing to watch your baby turn into a little kid.  On the other hand, it’s damn near devastating.  Despite the slaps, the tantrums, the back arching and the defiance, parenting is the best. thing. ever.  Being her mom is the best. job. ever.  Kissing her soft cheeks, snuggles in the morning, having a kitchen buddy, feeling her weight on my hip, hearing her laughs, seeing her eager face as she toddles up to me and holds a book up that she hopes I will read to her….

People, there is just nothing better.

I love this age.  I love this stage.  But please make her stop growing.

I might need another baby.

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This kid can eat. And loves anything that resembles soup.

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Loves snacking out of the same dishes that her older cousins use.

And drinking her water out of big kid cups after her cousins do that, too.

And drinking her water out of big kid cups after her cousins do that, too.

Still the picture of health.  ;)

Still the picture of health. 😉

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Comments

  1. Go Poppyseed! I love these updates. Especially how what you write is almost exactly what I’ve been thinking, as our girls are so similar in age – though we are as adept at talking here yet, and I think potty training is still a little way off.
    She looks like an absolute joy, and I easily get why you describe being her mother as the best experience ever 🙂

    • Sorry, *aren’t* as adept at talking 🙂 Or typing, it would seem!

    • Oh Emma, I think most of her words are just those that Oatmeal and I understand! I don’t think she’d be impressing any kindergartener teachers or anything, ha! She did just learn “apple” this week – she says “AP-PAH.”

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