Yesterday as I carried my daughter home from her very first manicure, she shared with me that she’s “all growns’ed up.” I suggested she take her time with this growing up business, seeing as how being a child is ever so much fun, and uh, she’s two. (I may have also mentioned that she can’t be all that grown up when her mother still carries her on the regular.)
But she’s certainly right that lately she’s been experiencing the world in new and more sophisticated ways. Trips to our favorite local bookstore used to mean chasing her around the stacks as she ripped books from the shelves. (It was a real treat). But on a visit this past weekend, she didn’t trash the Fancy Nancy section per usual: she sat quietly with a book by herself.
Granted, she can’t actually read yet and I was a little horrified by her selection (a very pink volume of Barbie: Wedding Party!), but my very active child sitting quietly by herself is MAJOR progress.
So, too, is seeing her nibble on dim sum, which was another first this past weekend. A few months ago, I would NEVER have dared take a hungry toddler to dine on unfamiliar food without a diaper bag full of snacks. Recipe.For.Disaster. But now? I offered her a bite of everything on the table (including peking duck, shrimp dumplings, and hot tea) and let her figure it out. At no point did I ever feel the need to spring an emergency bag of grapes from my purse. If she was hungry, she’d eat. (And she did.)
All in all, two and a half is turning out to be a pretty terrific age. She’s reasonably potty trained, plays independently with delight, and is legitimately helpful with her baby brother. She adorably suggests activities for us — just this morning she asked me to “do yoga” and have a tea party with her — and her unprompted observations about the world are actually pretty interesting. Our weekly mother-daughter lunch dates now include actual conversations, not just me interrogating her about whatever happened at preschool that day. With everything I’ve heard about three year-olds (SCARY), I’m relishing this time with her. She’s more companion than sidekick, and for now, that’s a kind of “growns’ed up” I can get on board with.