Yesterday while we were out for a walk, a man also out for a walk commented on Abigail asking how old she was. Almost 2 and a half, I replied giving her a few more months than she had. Partly because I was tired and headachey and partly, I think, because I was hoping this stage was closer to over than it really is. (Ironically, during the pre-grown-up-bedtime-check-on-the-children ritual to ensure sound sleep, Chris and I lamented that our baby was growing faster than we liked.)
Anyway, the man replied the "terrible twos" and assured me that I was half way through. I didn't have the heart to tell him that Abigail's terrible twos started late and were sure to invade her threes. I was pretty pessimistic during that walk and the ensuing hours that followed. (I'm a sleeper married to and parenting non-sleepers. They can cope, nay thrive, on far less than I. It is my curse.)
When I allow myself to focus, I am over-joyed at this stage. Abigail is always moving, running, jumping, exploring, ready to go on the next adventure clothed or not. She squeals in delight over Daddy's arrival home, cookies, hot chocolate, and other simple things. She is always talking and she is quirky and funny and life through her eyes is always entertaining. Boy, does that girl ever process over and over and over again, the same conversations. She plays and draws. She is scared of the tractors in Cars and the cows at her grandparents. She loves her animals and takes them to bed with her. She beats up her stuffed animals during nap time accusing them of taking something that belongs to her. She picks the beans out of her soup and launches them into mine. She still talks about her friends in Michigan and is excited that her friends in Pennsylvania are coming to visit. When they arrive and she has to share her toys, she is less than enthused.
Oh, there is much at this stage that leaves me grasping for patience. Trips to Target, her favorite store, are now unwelcome. The answer to every question is "Noooo." She ignores imperative sentences preferring the consequences to compliance. (What, exactly do you do with that situation?) She ignores requests to play when I am not busy and demands my attention when elbow deep in dishwater.
But I wouldn't trade it or her for the world! I will just keep praying that both of us make it out of this stage intact without a visit to Dr. Phil.