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Alcie Wib-web turns 26 months old August 3, 2010

Posted by Erin F. Wasinger in Letters to Alice.
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Dear Alice,

Your sister has been encroaching on your personal space for about three months now. Thanks for hanging in there. You’re here for comedic relief (laughing with you, not at you 78 percent of the time), to be another set of hands when I need someone to fetch a binky, and to have someone to converse with since we three spend a lot of time without your dad most nights.

As I mentioned before, you’re definitely 2 now. There are several phrases that poke that nerve that shoots right from your eardrum to the part of your brain that says “FLING SELF TO FLOOR,” and your dad and I have a mental list of them, which exercises our creative sides as we try to come up with euphemisms. “NO GO TO BEEEDDDDD!” You say. So we say, “OK, let’s go read some books upstairs.” “NO ‘MBURGER!” “OK, that’s not a hamburger, that’s ‘chicken’!” (Wink, wink.) “NO GO HOOOMMMEE!” “OK, then we’ll just go grab a bite to eat.”

Ugh. Two-year-olds.

I’d estimate three nights a week I get that edge in my voice around 8 p.m. that I can hear myself — the one that takes more than a few videos from “America’s Funniest Videos” to erase. I’ve accepted that no gold bars washed up into our yard after the recent floods, so I must continue working. But, by Thursday I am pushing your bedtime up to 7:30 and bribing you with promises of farmers markets and library trips and Target visits “in two days! Two days, you go to bed now and then one more time and then it’s SATURDAY and then we’ll go to Target. But you have to sleep now!”

I planned to be a much better parent — or at least more creative than this. I’m just … Tired.

But again our Mondays are our salvation. This week you grabbed Baby Cuckoo and her stroller — and instead of ramming it into your sister’s helpless body like last time, you grabbed your purse and asked for some monies so you could go to the store to buy diapers and formula.

As if my heart weren’t a soupy pile of sappiness as I stood in front of the drawer where I keep construction paper. I cut you up dollar bills out of green paper and you held them like a poker hand, treasuring them as if I’d handed you real money. “ALCIE GO SHOPPING!”

I can only hope that joy remains when you’re old enough to ask for an allowance, because I have a stack of pretty, bright green $4 bills for you and your sister as a little thank you for doing laundry. Now go put the dishes away while Mama watches her shows.

Other new developments: You chat on the phone, you remember people’s names, you put facts together to follow questions and stories. You’ve memorized “No David” by David Shannon, and I know this because I caught you yelling “NO DAVID” to the dog — odd, yes, but I was laughing aloud by the time you’d spouted off most of the phrases in the book: “DAVID BE QUIET. NO NO NO. GO TO ROOM. SETTLE DOWN. STOP THAT INSTANT. THAT ENOUGH. SAID NO DAVID.” Mr. Big had no blinking clue what you were talking about, but he knew to be afraid.

I’m a little scared that you too, my little firstborn, are growing up too fast; it struck me that you’re technically in your third year of life now, and I vowed to stop thinking technically after that thought had me gagging on my water the other day. Three years? Three years? I’ve had sweaters not last this long.  Also, three years — I’ve had dark circles under my eyes and jowls for three years now. This motherhood thing is serious.

Eek.

Love,

Mama

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