Hit your brakes, please.

April 2, 2013

I found myself today repeating my toddler’s words back to her.
“I don’t want that.”
She says it forty gazillion times a day, her version of the oft-maligned “NO!” that most toddlers spew.  I figured this was fair game, as I am stuck regurgitating responses to her 12+ hours a day – and I frankly don’t have a good enough vocabulary to keep that up for weeks.
She took this all with her game face, told me “okay, you have this” and gave me a piece of chalk; my best guess is that this was for me to be able to chronicle my general frustrations of the day, as with many things relating to a two year old, this did NOT come with a more detailed explanation.

And she is a delightful child.
She’s intelligent and insightful. 
She’s also timid in large crowds and can be a bully in small ones.
But what she is, most definitely, is a child with opinions.

This shirt?  
Too small for big mama.  Granted, it’s her shirt, so the insult is small… but you get the idea.

Today’s large battle was holding hands with Mama in the parking lot or on roadways.
When walking across a particularly busy street, in a crosswalk that demands drivers stop traffic for pedestrians, she threw herself down face-first declaring, “I don’t want that.”  She didn’t scream; she wasn’t angry.  She was simply declaring the truth:  That until this particular second she had been involved in an activity that she no longer chooses to be involved in.  And a dead weight she became, leading me to drag her one-armed across the busy road and onto the sidewalk to safety, silently mouthing words of apology to the folks around us in the way that only parents are familiar with.  

When we were finally loaded in the car I rested my forehead against the steering wheel, thankful for several things.  This incredibly engaging child that entertains me and challenges me so much… and the fact that our arrival home would herald in that time of day that has become all too precious:  nap time.Image

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