So: the update. All the credit for important changes of late go to Mateo: he's lively, animated, and freakin' TALKATIVE. He will narrate events as they happen. He will retell stories from his day. He will describe the imaginary meal he is cooking. All in GREAT DETAIL.
Most days, I feel blessed. He is obviously bright, clearly engaged, and generally fun to have around. I love being able to joke with him and for him to clearly see the humor in what I am saying. Recently, he has taken to asking, "Why?" This is constant.
Me: Here's your milk, bud.
Me: Because you asked for it.
Me: Because you wanted to have some
Me: Well, I'm guessing it's because you were thirsty.
Me: ARE YOU KIDDING ME?
So sometimes, yes, I get frustrated. Sometimes I want to be able to go grocery shopping without having to sing "C is for Cookie" on repeat. Occasionally, I would like for him to play quietly in a corner, without requiring constant recognition from me about what he is doing. But these are small moments, and they pass.
Overall, it's so incredible and fantastic to see a little personality emerge even stronger and brighter than before. Sure, I felt like I knew him a year ago. Now that he is talking and interacting, I feel I know him twice as well. I imagine that, by the time he's three, I might just feel my understanding of him has tripled.
It's funny for me to think back to this time last year. I have much greater confidence as a mother. I go out with him with less hesitation, I know we are able to make things work. Recently, I went on an extended weekend trip with him to New Mexico for a friend's wedding. It was exhausting, for sure, and I was barely able to experience the wedding to its fullest. However, I was proud of the two of us for making our mini-adventure work. He was fantastic on the plane, reading books and getting into conversations with neighbors. Most of the weekend, he managed to keep it together despite the onslaught of new places, foods, and people. I gave him big hugs afterwards and told him I was so proud. He responded with a kiss on my cheek.
And yesterday, oh Lord yesterday, my little man went pee pee in the potty completely of his own initiative. We've been working on just getting used to the idea. It's summer, so he sometimes frolicks around naked. Nothing in my house is so precious that it can't get peed on, so I take the risk. He also always pees in the bathtub. Being able to recognize the feeling of "needing to go" is part of the battle, and I think Mateo is getting very close. So yesterday, after a long time playing in the sprinklers outside, I took him indoors to get a diaper put on his bum. But just before I did it, he said, "Mama, I wanna go pee in the potty." So we wandered over and he stood up, pointed, and more-or-less got a wee stream of pee in the potty. I gave him a big hug and told him to run into the other room to tell his grandparents. He ran out (naked) and got a little distracted, but I said, "What do you need to tell them again?" and he enthusiastically said, "Mimi, Baba! I went pee pee in the potty!" All the family (except Andrew) was there, and we gave him a little round of applause.
He deserves it.
Otherwise, non-Mateo news:
- Still with the man, still going strong, still not going to discuss it here. I do have to declare this one a keeper, though. He voluntarily went on a family vacation with me, he accompanied me on a visit to my grandma's nursing home, and he does all other kinds of wonderful things that people with big hearts do for those they love. Also: he is a very good cook. I have written proof that my only criteria for a man was that he knew how to cook, and I had no idea about that aspect of his awesomeness when we first started chatting one another up. Crazy to think we'll be coming up on six months already. In some ways, that seems super fast. In others, I think, "Wait, haven't I known him for years?"
- I took a class and am learning to sew. This was one of my only goals for 2009, other than the basic Make It Happen goals of keeping my job, eating right, and raising my son to the best of my ability. So thus far, I have made a pair of pants that is 80% complete. I have loved, loved, loved the experience, and can't wait to try something new. I am thinking a skirt (apparently easier than pants, but I won't have an instructor around to help).
- My house got robbed this week, the first time in my life that I have had the experience of coming home to a house after a burglar has been pawing through my stuff. I am a cheap bastard and have nothing worth stealing, so I think the guy must have been pretty disappointed. All in all, he got away with maybe $300 worth of stuff, though that would have been a much higher figure had he gotten away with my computer. It looked like he had tried to dismantle it and take it with him, but he might have just gotten spooked and run off before he could figure it out. I consider myself blessed, in some ways. Still, it's sort of creepy to think of someone crawling through the window and walking around our little home.
So as not to end on a low note, I'll throw in some of Mateo's favorite phrases. These are amusing and I never want to forget the sound of his little two-year-old voice piping in to tell me what's what:
- "Because... that's how it goes, Mama." (in response to the question "Why?")
- "Um... let me think about it." (in response to any question about what he's going to do later)
- "It's delicious!" (in response to "How is your food?")
- "Comb her hair with a dinglehopper!" (in response to "What can you do with a silly sailor?")