Saturday, December 28, 2013

Not A Baby Anymore

Dear Sophie Queen,

It seems appropriate to address you by the nickname you have at school. Sophie Queen started off as a pet name your very first teacher affectionately gave you when you were in the infant room. I'm not entirely sure what characteristics were evident in your infancy that led to your nickname, but all your teachers and even your schoolmates call you "Sophie Queen" or "Queen" or "Queenie". And you seem to have grown into it. I am told that, even though you are tiny, you have a tendency to tell others what to do.

Even though you are not quite three years old yet, lately you have asserted that you are not a baby anymore. When you're eating, and trying to talk yourself into a few more bites, you announce that you have to eat so you can grow bigger. And then you look to me and say, "Mommy, I'm going to grow bigger and not be a baby anymore." I play along and say, "But I want you to be my baby." This is a fun conversation for you. You disagree and reassert your being intent on growing up. And I can't argue because I want you to eat more. (You persist at the "less than 3 percentile" mark on the height and weight scales. The next tallest kid in your class is at least a head taller than you. In the end, this only gets you to eat a few more bites, but every little bit helps!)

At work, a colleague asked me, "How is your little angel?" I replied that my little angel has lost some of her angel dust, and I relayed the story of how you shouted "Dammit!" at our dog Lucy, who wasn't behaving as you had commanded her. You shouted it so loud that I heard it from another room, and I walked to where you were and looked at you speechlessly. Fortunately, you knew your error immediately, and all your Daddy had to say was your name. He didn't say your name angrily or loudly. He didn't have to. As soon as he said your name, you burst into tears. I was relieved that you had a sense of right and wrong, and also amazed at how much it affected you to have disappointed your Daddy. You reminded me of me. Later, your Daddy, who was as astonished as me, asked, "How long will I have that kind of power over (affect on) her?" I was also relieved to see your Daddy recognize your tender spot. You were contrite, and instead of scolding you, he had just hugged you and calmly instructed you not to say that. You then walked to me for another reassuring hug, which you got in full force. Confidence restored, your tears abated.

Unfortunately, despite that learning opportunity, I think I still hear you say from time to time "dammit" very quietly to yourself when you're frustrated. And when I'm 99 percent certain it's what you said, I confront you, and you merely say, "Sorry, Mom. I say dangit." Sigh... You are, after all, your Daddy's girl, so your inappropriate language will have to be his problem to solve. We have other effects of the terrible twos that I can try to help you with - such as your stubborness, to which I will admit to having contributed 50 percent.

On the plus side, I'm seeing you mature in many ways....not just in vocabulary, but also in your breadth and depth of comprehension, and your sense of humor! You are a little like me but mostly I see your Dad's sense of humor in you.

I don't want to forget the funny memory captured by the photos below (I've learned to have the cell phone camera ready to catch these wonderful candids). While I was in the upstairs bathroom doing my nightly hygienic routine, I heard you giggling in the bedroom. Your self-amusement and laughter continued as I was brushing my teeth. My curiosity was picqued, and after rinsing the toothpaste from my mouth, I called to you and asked, "Sophie, what's so funny?" You came to the bath room door and showed me what was so funny - you were wearing my pink bra over your jammies! You stood in front of me and giggled and giggled and giggled, and then for a few seconds, you looked down at the pink monstrosity on your chest and said in all sincerity, "This is scary." You returned to laughing, and I joined you! With tears rolling down my cheeks!

Sophie Queen, I'm afraid to know how quickly the day will come when you will be wearing a bra.

Wearing Mommy's Bra

Wearing Mommy's Bra

Baby, don't grow up too fast.  And, really?  Is my bra that scary?


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