As one can imagine, life with an older toddler is a constant series of ups and downs. Several recent illustrations demonstrate my point nicely.
An 'up': Sunday, I was feeling particularly sleepy from exhaustive potty training over the weekend, and just general house chores and other tiresome activities. I curled up on the couch. Hank, showing signs of inheriting my nurturing gene, leapt into action. Next thing I knew, he had brought down his favorite fleece blankie and his own bed pillow. He covered me delicately and tucked the pillow under my head. He rubbed my back for a minute, and then disappeared into the kitchen. "Daddy, Mommy needs juice!" Knowing that I don't like orange juice, Mike came in to investigate. Hank is the juice lover, and since that's what he would have wanted if he weren't feeling good, he figured that's what mom would want too. I politely declined the juice, and Hank looked concerned. He hustled up the stairs, and comes back a few minutes later balancing a little bathroom cup filled to the brim with water. "Here you go Mommy! Drink this wato, it make you feel betto." It was all so sweet I could hardly stand it.
A 'down': At approximately 4:45 am this morning, I'm woken by a rustling Hank who is sleeping on a pillow and blanket next to our bed (there is a long, excruciating toddler story attached to this that I will spare you from). "I want to watch NOGGIN!!!" I close my eyes, praying he goes back to sleep. "I WANT TO WATCH NOGGIN!!" I ignore him and re-cover him, and in a few minutes he simmers down and falls back into a stupor. By full morning, he wakes up cranky and miserable. He's not too bad while we're in the house, but out in the driveway, disaster ensues. "I want (see a pattern here?) to play in the car!! No mommy no, go back in house!! I WANT to play in the CAR!!!!!" After spending 5 minutes stuffing him against his will into his car seat, I attempt to calm him down so that my ear drums won't rupture on the way to daycare. Eventually, he complies. When we arrive at daycare, things don't improve. Hank rushes ahead of a little 2 year old to press the automatic door button, coveted by every mobile toddler and pre-schooler in the daycare. The 2 year old bursts into tears and begins a full meltdown. I notice that it is the son of the office secretary and am mortified. Now my kid made another kid cry. Great, just great.
An "I'm not sure": "Hon, you're officially the poo person!" Well, fantastic. Isn't that what we all aspire to be? The person in charge of poo. Can I put that on my CV? I bet if I discussed it in my next Statement of Service it would prove a lot more interesting than the other stuff I concoct to go in there. Anyway, this weekend, Hank went poo for us on the potty multiple times, and apparently he responds best and really lets loose when it's Mommy that assists him. *sighs*