You turned 21-months-old this week. During this past month you’ve seemed to become a fully functioning, self-reliant human being. You’re starting to embrace your independence and take on life’s little challenges; like how many times can we all watch Finding Nemo in a single day.
You LOVE the movie Finding Nemo. It wouldn’t be a normal day if we didn’t hear the pitter patter of your feet as you come running from the other side of the house while exclaiming, “Nemo. Nemo. Nemo. Nemo. NEMO! NEMO!! NEMO!!! NEEEEEEEEEEEMO!!!!!!!!”
What’s funny is that although every member of this household has seen Finding Nemo a combined time of four hundred thousand times, your mom and I still enjoy watching it. In fact, we’ve decided that if we ever provide you with a sibling, his or her name will probably be named Nemo. That way we’re pretty much guaranteed you’ll eventually get sick of Nemo.
We thought you were going to be an Elmo kid, hence us getting practically everything Elmo for you for Christmas. Elmo’s got nothing on Nemo in this household. Although I am a little partial to the Elmo cell phone that I got for you. This little phone let me download a recording of Elmo saying your name. But of course you have a very unique name, Elmo thinks you’re a little Asian girl. “Ha ha! Hello, Elmo speaking! Oh, I’m so glad to hear from you… May Lee!”
This month you learned how to get out of your crib. When this first happened, your mom and I were baffled. It wasn’t until recently that we were able to witness your escape technique. I must say, I am quite impressed.
Another feat you have accomplished is turning doorknobs and opening doors. Why, just the other evening I was taking care of some paper work when you just barged into the bathroom. You walked right up beside me, pointed at the toilet and proudly said, “Poop!” Not one of my proudest moments, but a moment at which I was relatively proud of you. And just so you know, next on your hit parade is learning how to use the toilet.
Something really cute that you started doing this month is calling you mom Mommy. Up until recently it had always been Mama. It just sounds so much cuter and endearing whenever you say Mommy.
If I had to guess, I’d venture to say that you now know 90% of the letters of the alphabet. We play our alphabet game during bath time. I pick up a letter and say, “Maly, what’s this?” To which you usually say the right letter. After a few minutes you invariably get bored and resort to body surfing or demanding that we watch NEEEEEEEEMO! again.
You’ve also become very astute with your colors. You know blue, green, red, pink, purple, white, brown, yellow, orange, silver, gold and black. “Blue cup”, “Green spoon”, “White truck”, “Red choo choo train”.
Recently you’ve become very much a Mommy’s girl. I’ll come home from work in the evenings, excited to see you and play with you, but you don’t really seem to care much that I’m home. You usually start in on your quasi-witching hour when I get home. Eventually you’ll warm up after much coaxing on my part. I’ll give you your bath, brush your teeth and put your pajamas on, but after that, you go back into Mommy mode. I’ve tried on a few occasions to put you to bed, but you scream and cry for your mommy! I think this has a large part to do with your mom recently taking on a job for the better part of the week where you were at home with a nanny all day.
It wasn’t until tonight when I was finally able to have to privilege of putting you to sleep. We had the Fenders over for dinner and we all stayed up late. It was too late to take a bath, so I brushed your teeth and we walked into your room. You asked to read a book, so we read one book. You wanted to read another book, so you walked to the bookshelf and got the picture book that you and I would always read before I would put you to bed. After we finished that book, I told you it was time for night night. You grabbed Baby Gigi and I picked you up, ready to put you to bed. We went into the kitchen to give your mom a kiss goodnight. We walked back to your room and I put you in your crib. You had me put Gigi at the foot of your crib with Mickey, your teddy bear, bunny, baby and bear. Then you did something that I’ve only heard of. After I kissed my hand, put the kiss on your forehead and told you I loved you, you outstretched your arm and held your palm out to me. I knew to kiss your palm as this is Mommy’s and your ritual. I dutifully kissed your palm. You then outstretched your other arm and presented me with your palm, which I kissed as well.
That moment made me feel good. It felt like you had let me back into the club.
I’m so proud of you and so thankful that you’re my daughter. I don’t think anyone really knows what they’re getting into when they become a parent. You’ve made it for a blessed ride and I want you to know that I’m thankful for everything that you’ve taught me so far. I hope I’m doing the best to return that favor.
I love you, Sugar.