What's So Terrible About Two?

It's time to talk about two. You know the two. The terrible two? I'm a pretty good baby person. By that I actually mean I have been graced with exceptionally easy babies. They eat well, never get sick, neither was/is much of a cryer, and both were sleeping twelve hours a night by the time they were six months. I know you want to punch me in the face right now...but wait! Because it turns out my humbling has come.

Three months into Lily's two year old year and all I can say? I need a nap!

In the past three moths we have tackled sleeping issues, eating issues, and whole spectrum of attitude issues. When they say two year olds push boundaries they clearly don't know my little firecracker who chooses TNT for her boundaries every time.

In my head I have a running commentary of sage parenting wisdom for this time: "she need boundaries to know she is safe", "consistency is key", "do this hard work now and you won't have to work as hard at it later", "now is a time to allow her a little more freedom", "start as you mean to go on", and so on and so forth as nauseam. I'm glad I have all that. They are my little cheerleaders when we have to put yet another toy in time out. When she has to apologize to her sister yet again. When once again she is missing lunch because she refused to pick up her toys when asked. When she is throwing herself on the floor screaming.

It's all so daily. I find myself repeating the same phrases over and over. Try again with respect. I didn't hear you ask for anything. You have two choices. You may not do that until you do this. Mostly it makes me feel like a not very fun mommy.

So what's not so terrible about two?

Everything! The glint she gets in her eye when I know she is testing me. It lets me know which battles to fight. Her beautiful and insatiable curiosity that has led her to be able to identify landforms from mesas to plains to mountains. Her energy the greets me every morning with a robust and resounding, "Hiiiiiii Mommy!" Her newfound love of adjectives, when I told her her scarf looked beautiful the other day she told me, "No, it cute!" Her deep and ardent desire to be helper especially with her little sister. The fact that when she was ungrateful for her toys the other day I asked her to list me all the things she was thankful for and she never missed a beat in saying, "Ava, My brudders, mommy, daddy...." (That list went on for a long time but consisted entirely of people).

It's beautiful.

It is a beautiful, exhausting, terrifying explosion of growth.

For all of us.