Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Monthly Update: 24

Dear Foster,

Happy belated birthday!

You turned two last week, even though you've been acting like a terrible two year old for weeks now.  Partly because you were sick, I think, and partly because it's your job.

It started with an off and on fever that lasted for a week before I finally took you to the doctor where you were diagnosed with bronchitis. 

That week was awful, I tell ya.  Your daddy and I would just stare at each other like deer in the headlights because we had no idea what to do with you.

You whined.  You cried.  And, you had tantrums.  Two year old tantrums.  You know, the kind where the kid is screaming, "NO!" and waving his arms back and forth, sometimes even smacking his parents. 

Yeah, THAT kind of tantrum.

Thankfully those kind of tantrums are rare for you.  Usually you fall out because we can't read your mind, or because we told you no, or because you can't get the square peg into the round hole, or because, well, JUST BECAUSE!

To make matters worse, giving you medicine that week was not unlike trying to give medication to a cat!  Prying your mouth open with the syringe and then shooting it as far down your throat as possible.  Only to have you gag and spit it all back out.

You normally like medicine and get excited when we ask if you want some.  "It'll make you feel better" is what we always say, and lo and behold, it does!

But, since you didn't like this particular antibiotic, it took an extra day to finish the coarse of treatment.  The 'ole "it'll make you feel better" line didn't work, so I had to be firm with you and then love on you when it was all over.  I made sure to have something ready to offer afterward that would "help" with the taste and now that is your favorite thing to tell me...

"Juice will help, mama."

Once the antibiotic kicked in, you became your old self again.  My happy, chatty, busy boy!

I had no idea that turning two meant becoming bossy, but my gosh, all you do is tell me and your daddy what to do!  Life with you is a constant dialogue.  Like we're in mediation all. day. long.  Back and forth.  Back and forth.  And then, at the end of the day, after we've each compromised on this point and that point, we're all exhausted and needing some sleep in order to have the energy to do it all over again tomorrow.

First thing in the morning is not, "Hi mama!  Good morning!  I love you! You're the prettiest mama ever!" 

No, it's more like, "Light on, mama!  Vaporizer off!  Heater off!  Ga-Ga (Foster) do it!  Want fruit-strip! Open it, mama!  Want more!  Banana!  Peeeeeeeeez.  Mama, hold you.  Hold you, mama!"

I'm telling you what, just talking with you is exhausting!  There isn't anything you can't say.  Granted, your words aren't all clear, but you try to say anything and everything.

Sometimes you get hung up on a word, but you are very persistent and even if it takes you three tries, you eventually get the sentence out.  Meanwhile, your daddy and I have turned into a puddle, willing the words out of your mouth, wishing we could say it for you, and then gushing with praise once you've said your peace.

We went to Florida for Christmas, and boy was that challenging  fun!

The ten hour drive to and from was exhausting for your me and your daddy.  I'm sure it was exhausting for you too, but in a different way.

For some reason you refuse to sleep in the car.  I don't understand it.  You are your father's and my child, so WHY DON'T YOU SLEEP IN THE CAR?!

Your daddy and I are champion sleepers.  I bet we could win the Olympics if sleeping was a sport. 

Before you were born we could log at least twelve hours a night on the weekends.  And, we were both great car sleepers growing up.  But, for some reason, you did not inherit this gene and the most you'll sleep in the car is an hour and a half.

Honk if you agree that that is not enough time for a toddler to sleep on a ten hour road trip...



Anyway, the only way we were able to get you to sleep, even that long, was to tell you, "Foster, it's nap time.  You had lunch, you played, and now we're going to turn on some music.  You need to close your eyes and take a nap."

Funny thing about you is that you actually obeyed us.  (Ha!  One point for Team Mama & Daddy!)

While we were in Florida you got to play with your cousins and get reacquainted with the rest of my family.  You were a great sport while we were there and I'm always so proud to show you off.

You're sweet, smart, a good eater, full of energy, and a good sleeper.  You make loving you so easy, you make loving fun.

(I was torn between which song title to post there, so I went with both.  Thank you for your understanding.)

We weren't back from Florida very long when your daddy went out of town on business.  For a week. 

Honestly, I was dreading being a single parent for that long, but once again, you came through, and we ended up having a great time together.  You even started counting to ten and singing the Alphabet Song that week.  (Ha!  One point for Team Mama!)

Maybe it was all that Mommy & Me time. No silly distractions from daddy. No hide & seek. No wrestling.

Or, maybe it was the fact that you're TWO now and those things just come naturally.  I'll go with the latter, because seeing and hearing you play with your daddy is totally worth losing that point!

When your daddy came home from his trip, he said, "I missed you (meaning me, of course he missed you!) and "I missed our family."

I thought that second part was so sweet.

I mean, yeah, we love each other and miss each other when we're not all together, but something about being all together is grander than each of us, just being each of us.

Maybe that's what Aristotle meant when he said, "The whole is more than the sum of its parts."

We celebrated your birthday with local family and I think you had a good time.  You ate up your cake and ice cream, and because you are my child, after all, you asked for seconds!

Then, that night, after we'd put you to bed, I heard you singing the Happy Birthday song to yourself.

If only those baby monitors came with a record button...



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