Thursday, September 27, 2007

Things I'd forgotten

Here's a list of things I'd forgotten about 1-year-olds/new toddlers.

They look like a cross between Charlie Chaplin and a duck when they walk, especially if they're just wearing a diaper.

They get good at going up stairs very quickly, but it takes them MUCH longer to figure out how to get back down safely. In the meantime, I develop lightening-fast reflexes every time Campbell gets near the stairs.

They develop this fascination with putting things in other things. We've learned that whenever we can't find our keys/cell phone/tv remote/hairbrush/etc we need to look in all of the drawers, garbage cans, and diaper pails within Campbell's reach. Ella and Lily have learned to check the kitchen trash for missing toys. Campbell's thrown away quite a lot of their stuff. Each time they get upset I remind them that if they had picked up the toy to begin with, Campbell wouldn't have been able to throw it away.

They demonstrate the law of physics that says, "A body in motion will stay in motion . . ." Campbell will walk and walk and walk in a straight line until he runs into something or I head him off and turn him around. Then he walk in a straight line whichever direction I've just faced him. He's like a little wind-up toy waddling along.

They don't sit still, not ever. Campbell will not sit in my lap at all, even when he wants comforting. If he falls down or donks his head or just needs reassurance, he will waddle over and hold up his arms for me to hold him. He'll put his head on my shoulder for about 2 seconds and then wriggle back off my lap. He won't even sit in my lap to drink a bottle of milk. And now that he's down to just nursing once a day, he doesn't even want to hold still for that. I think tonight's his last night of nursing before bed.

They are just so fun. I had been so sad about Campbell's turning one that I forgot how fun babies are at this stage. He loves doing things to make me laugh and gives big belly laughs when I do something silly, like putting my shoe on my head. He's a tremendous flirt with just about everyone, making people work to get him to smile. Campbell has started giving us kisses, which are more like a big lick, but we know what he means. And his brief snuggles are just so sweet.

When Ella was about six months old, I was having a really tough time as a new mother. Part of my problem was a profound sadness at how short a time babies are babies. My Aunt Jane was in town for a visit with my cousins, and she said something to me that helped more than I can ever describe. She said that kids just keep getting better, that each stage is fun. That one comment helped me refocus as a mother, and it has turned out to be completely true. Babyhood is sweet and snuggly, but toddlerhood is a blast too. I need to remember to enjoy the stage I'm in instead of missing the stage that's past. And that goes for all three of my kids, not just Campbell.


Seamus O'Pine said...

So, as I'm heading back to the hotel from the National Gallery (THANK YOU!!!! Great show!), I saw an inscription, which said (paraphrased) "the Past is Prologue."

I loved the sentiment/philosophy. looks like it applies to you, too!

Anonymous said...

Never look back, it's too sad. Aunt Jane is right, too. It gets better and better.

P.S. Why was 9/27 the last night of nursing? I know Campbell turned one a week or so ago, but why Thursday night? AND, how did it go?