Today my three year old is exactly two months from her 4th birthday. I was getting sappy about a week ago and then I realized, “Oh yea..”
This is when the talking goes from necessary to Not Necessarily; relevant, logical, important, factual, coherent. It’s just CONSTANT. And it’s not that I don’t love hearing what she’s saying, but the fact that every.single.statement has to start with “Momma?” begins to wear down the nerves after about 11am.
ex. “Momma? I love you.” (4 sec later) “Momma? I’m almost 4!” (2.1 sec later) “Momma? That’s a dog.” (1.6 sec later) “Momma, I like pink. Do you like pink Momma?” (1.9 sec later) “Momma? Are we in your car or daddy’s car?” (2 sec later) “Momma? Are you drinking something?” (3 sec later) “Momma? Why can’t I drink that, too? What’s al-ka-hall?” (1.2 sec later) “Momma? Why is there cotton in your ears?” (2.3 sec later) “Momma? Why are you in the pantry with the door shut and all alone?” (4 sec later) “Momma, are you gonna get up off the floor? Why are you rocking back and forth like that?”
(Insert genuine and meaningful sidebar about how it’s horrible to say this out loud and that some parents actually would give anything just to hear their children’s thoughts 24/7 spoken out loud and here you are bitching about your daughter’s abilities like an asshole) duly noted.
And apparently i’ve also forgotten about the fiercely regarded new sense of independence mingled with the absolute inability to complete the task. Like getting dressed:
“NO. I will not wear those shorts. NO! I want a (long sleeved-too small for me) Princess dress today.” It’s going to be 85 in the land of no a/c and she is flopping around on the floor demanding to wear the damned dress.
This is second to getting undressed. “NO! I will do it by myself.”
5 minutes, 12 grunts, 3 full body twists and 8 screams later I’m now forced to untangle the shirt from her butt, the sleeves from her ankle and the bruise from falling down in the attempt.
“Momma? Why are you in the closet and what are you humming?”
No really, it’s a precious age. This dawn before the f*cking fours. It’s hard sometimes to take a step back and realize that you’re actually supposed to be savoring this time because despite the screaming and tantrums, it actually will get worse. Usually in a public place with lots of witnesses.
So embrace that independence and budding individuality! When they are teenagers we’ll all be cursing it.