Tuesday, November 13, 2012

The dreaded T-word

Despite all the great things happening lately, I've been feeling a bit sad over the past few days. Why? Because of this conversation:

Friend: "Ella's getting to be such a big kid now."

Me: "No she's not."

Friend: "I'd say she's definitely a toddler now."

Me: "She's only 10 months old! She's a baby!" (Okay, I lie. She's really almost 11 months old. I'm in serious denial).

Friend: "Well, she does walk and talk, and she acts like a toddler."


Ever since then, I've started noticing all the ways in which my little itty baby isn't quite so little any more. There are some big ways, most notably the walking and talking. She eats regular table food. Her toys consist of "big kid" things like puzzles and blocks. Today she even made up some game that involved the teething rings and her hairbrush, and would give an exasperated sigh every time I clearly wasn't playing along correctly.

A small sampling of her "big kid" activities

And then there are the more subtle ways. These are the ones that are harder for my mommy heart to bear. She's not big into cuddling-sure, she'll give hugs, and there are days when she is clingy, but she no longer likes to sit in my lap just hanging out. I can't recall the last time she ended up falling asleep in my arms, or the last afternoon we spent together napping in bed. This afternoon I tried to nurse her to sleep for her nap, but once she was done, she rolled over and fussed until I put her in her crib.  

Used to be this was the only way she would take a nap

Don't get me wrong, I'm glad that my child is healthy and is hitting all of her milestones. It's definitely bittersweet, though. Sometimes, as a mom, the days can drag by, then you look up at the calendar and realize that your baby's first birthday is coming up next month.

So is my child a toddler? The jury is still out on that one. According to the dictionary, a toddler is "one who walks with the short tottering steps in the manner of a young child." In my mind, though, she is not one...yet.

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