Before tackling the fascinating topic of the booble, I just wanted to mention that I think my last post was horrendously confusing and misleading. None of the events in the post actually happened. The entire vacation-gone-wrong anecdote was analogous only and intended only as a vehicle to allow me to comment on the ability of the human mind to adapt to continuously worsening frameworks and find the good within the context of worsening realities. I think I belabored the analogy so painfully that it was hopelessly confusing. I do want to state for the record though that although finishing the John Muir trail would indeed be my dream vacation (we are missing the section between Reds Meadows and Bishop Pass for those of you who know of this trail); doing so with a toddler and pre-schooler is actually a recurring nightmare from which I awaken screaming. Regularly. Our vacation this year was visiting family in Wisconsin and that was adventurous enough for now.
Onto the Booble. The Booble is now 16 months old. She has earned this unfortunate nickname due to her reluctance to give up a certain item belonging to me (actually certain items). After the continuing battle with Thing 1 over the nuk (we have given up, she uses it whenever she wants, we are done fighting that particular fight; presumably she will not go to high school with a pacifier) we decided Thing 2 would never use a nuk. She doesn't. She uses me instead. It makes me feel needed, bonded, cherished, annoyed and trapped all within the space of 10 minutes at times. Most recently I came back from a 16 km run in 30 deg celsius, 10,000% humidity weather. I was exhausted, depleted, beyond sweaty and was gagging because of my own stench. I sat down on a towel on the floor (certain my toxic body emissions would burn a whole in our wooden floor) to recover and sure enough the Booble toddles up, plops herself in my disgusting lap and starts pulling on the bottom of my sports bra. I have never known a human more immue to disgusting odors (her other hobby is hanging out in the bathroom while we relieve ourselves!). I am sure that her inability to sleep through the night (seriously, still!) is related to the continued, avid nursing. So we have one child with a nuk addiction, one child with a boob addiction. Good thing we are not having a third because I am not sure how we could go wrong in a different way on this particular issue!
The Booble is now chatting away. Her first words appear to be:
en bas: pronounced ABA! ususally said with urgency to mean "put me down" or, alternatively, if she is down "pick me up".
mama: used to mean me sometimes but generally any object of her desire.
These words comprise her first sentence: "mama en bas!"
encore: pronounced anca, to mean more often accompanied by the baby sign.
no: used to mean no, yes, maybe. Always said in a string "no, no, no, no, no".
She is really getting into this mix of things now. If, for example, Thing 1 and I are making cookies, she will climb onto the counter-top and plop her diapered butt right onto the dough and try to work with a cookie cutter drooling away into the batter (side note: if ever you are at our house, don't eat any food offered to you unless it is in its original, still sealed packaging - anything else is suspect). She is beginning with the temper tantrums and biting. The biting! Apparently this is the big next phase at the daycare. Biting as a form a self expression. The thing that kills me (with laughter) is that they are not allowed to tell parents which other child was involved in the biting incident (probably a good policy) so when I come to pick her up, her teacher will say something to the effect of "Well, she bit one of her little friends today." or "One of her little friends bit her." or, on a good day "She bit one of her friends and her friend bit her back." Which always makes me want to say "I don't know what the word friend means to you, but for me biting generally precludes friendship!". I guess the biting is normal (despite the extremely annoying assurances of one person in my life who assured me it is most certainly NOT normal and the children she raised NEVER bit... yeah, uh huh, thanks a lot).
The Booble has fully mastered walking and actually runs fairly quickly. She leads with her head using excellent "fall forward" technique advised by the Alexander Method! Generally anywhere she wants to go, she leads with her head using it as a weight to force her way anywhere or into any situation. She is a nightmare to share a bed with (usually when she cried for her 1 am feeding, I am too tired to put her away when we are done). She will very deliberately turn perpendicular to the other occupants of the bed and then spend the rest of the night kicking ribs and worming her fingers into armpits.
Her relationship with Thing 1 is at times splendid and at times fraught. As I write, the two of them are 100% entertaining each other, no intervention from me required. No one can break a grumpy spell or make her laugh like Thing 1. No one. At other times the fighting, pushing and, yes, biting makes me want to jump out a window (until I remember we live on the ground floor and that would just be silly).
All in all she seems healthy, happy, thriving and reassuringly normal. I know as a mom I am supposed to wax poetic about how "advanced" she is but whatever... time will tell if she is a genius, for now she is our adorable, bed hogging, biting booble.