Sunday, March 21, 2010

To Speck at 2 (and a bit)


Well, you're officially 2 years old. The distance you've come in the last three months is pretty well captured by the fact that you can tell people both your age and your name now (at least, the one-syllable version of the latter), things you never even showed an interest in before. You speak of yourself in the third person almost exclusively, insisting "Miss [Speck] do that right now!" or answering questions like "I wonder who might have drawn this nice picture?" with "Miss [Speck]" (in a pleased tone of voice). You can tell many of your own Epic Tales now too, such as "Dentist said Miss [Speck] brush teeth!" and "Put soccer balls on shelf to keep away [from] cats!" and you narrate your way through the day with a rushing river of words. (Needless to say, when the pediatrician wondered at your 24-month visit whether you were speaking in sentences yet, we assured her that we were well past two-word telegraphy!)

Speck fixes the neighbor's snowman, 24 monthsLanguage isn't the only thing that has continued to develop; most notable is an increase in expressions of empathy. You are quick to show sympathy for things that appear weak or broken, saying "poor Yogi" or "feel better, flowers" and worrying about our neighbor's melting snowman. For a while you were fixated on a story book about a crying tot (Little Pookie), getting teary at the beginning each time and then laughing with relief as his mother made him feel better with silly suggestions. You've also picked up the words/notions of "please" (immediately put to use as a tool for better service) and "sorry" and use them appropriately.

You've taken on a range of new skills and activities, from singing songs (I almost fell over at Starbucks one day when I realized you had just said "Oh, Suzanna, don't you cry for me"), to working jigsaw puzzles (of a range of complexities), to building Hefty Things out of some wild bristle blocks you got as a present. You can play with a dollhouse for long stretches, moving its residents and visitors from one place to another and giving them lots of naps; you can drive your parents to drink with your obsession with anything sticker-related; and you sometimes dance with abandon when the right tune comes on or signs of spring get under your skin.

Speck working some puzzles in the aquarium cafeteriaOther developments are more continuous. You're very nimble on the stairs now, although you seem to prefer going solo on hands and knees over standing up and requiring a grip. You continue to love books, including ever longer stories, and you especially like to point things out or find odd details in illustrations along the way. You like to feel like a Big Girl at a restaurant by sitting in a booster in a regular chair, rather than a highchair, and by brushing your teeth with your parents in the morning -- for that matter, a couple of growth spurts have removed some of your roundness and made you look a less like a baby and more like a lanky Little Kid (I'm sure this will become only more alarming). You seem to know the whole alphabet at this point, including most of the lowercase letters, and can be overheard singing the ABC song to yourself from time to time. You would like to be counting past 10, although the order of those numbers is a bit less clear to you (11, 12, 14, 16...), given their rarity in books and rhymes, but you have some counting/matching puzzles that draw you onward, so I suspect that it won't be long.

There are some rumblings that we may be in for another round of boundary-testing and other dramatic behaviors, but that could just be the tail end of your first real illness (caught somewhere a couple weeks after your birthday), which left you sniffly and grumpy for a week or so (and occasioned a rare afternoon lying in Mom's lap watching Sesame Street). Only time will tell. You've also thrown us a bit for a loop by completely upending your food preferences and quantities just when we thought we had a grip. But mostly you seem to be full of energy for play (although begging off of the playground!), enjoy most of what comes your way, and offer snuggles aplenty to those who love you. I think we're more than willing to take our chances with whatever comes our way next. Looking forward to year number three!


No comments: