And just so we’re clear: I’m not a needy person. I didn’t have kids to feel good about myself. They were both accidents.
Or blessings…depending on the day.
|This is Motherhood, folks. In all its glory.|
Before she had much of a vocabulary, Coco would express her stinky sentiments with body language. She’d cling to Mimi when I reached for her, held Aunt Kirsty’s hand and refused mine, and then wail for thirty minutes whenever Nama left to go home. Fortunately, I was able to shake the hurt feelings pretty quickly because her infantile brain would completely forget Mimi, Kirsty, and Nama’s privileged statuses as mama resumed the role of all-awesome-center-of-Coco’s-universe position. And that’s exactly how I like it. I mean, who wouldn’t? Yes, Mimi, Kirsty, Nama–I’ve seen your poorly concealed smirks.
The child now possesses an ever-growing vocabulary. Sometimes I think this is unfortunate. She is able to get her EXACT point across a little too well.
So over Christmas break, Coco did her thing and demoted me. Not only with body language (the girl could have been a hit in the silent film business) but also with her speech.
“No, Mama. Go away” when I tried to play with her.
“No. Mimi do’ed it” when I tried to feed her.
Wake up from naptime, “I want Nama.”
And it went on and on and on. Don’t worry, we did deal with the situation. She’s not allowed to talk like that, but it usually doesn’t stop her. After all, what really makes the twos terrible? Eh? (This is me excusing my child’s brattiness as totally normal and thereby deflecting any possible criticism from the more conservative parenting camp).
It’s no fun to hear that kind of stuff as a mom. After all, I was pregnant with her, birthed her, was stitched up for her (yowzers), nursed her, changed her, blah blah blah her. I mean, she should be thanking me and kissing my feet for the rest of her life, right?
But in all honesty, I didn’t care too much, because like I said, I have Chauceman, anddd—at this point, if someone wants her while she’s being a little poop then be my guest. You deal with her.
I did miss her though. I mean, she is pretty flippin’ adorable.
The week before we came home I was sort of depressed about leaving friends and family. I didn’t feel like we would be coming home when we left them. It’s funny how barely making our flight, changing a poopy diaper on the plane, and hearing Chauceman scream the entire shuttle ride home will make you long for any home–even if it is kind of like a shoe.
Well, as we walked up to our apartment, Coco got super excited about seeing the playground and familiar buildings. We opened the door and she was consumed with a zeal that I don’t think I’ve seen before:
“This is my house!”
“That’s my table!”
“That’s my toilet…I need to go poop.”
“That’s my fridgerator,” as I pulled out the rewarding chocolate chip.
“That’s my bed. That’s my toy. That’s my book….” and it went on until she had pretty much listed every item in our house. Usually I try to minimize the use of the word “mine.” It’s like the F bomb when you have a two year old. But in this case, I was thrilled to see her recognize and take ownership of our home.
The enthusiasm was catching, I’m not going to lie. Matt and I both started looking at our place with a renewed (or maybe just new) appreciation. This was our house, and it was good to be home.
It didn’t die down either. She was thrilled to be home. I could see the Your-Not-My-Mommy-Syndrome begin to dissipate. Thank God.
And then she made up for her three week ‘tude in one sweet sentence.
She was going potty (don’t let this detail deter you from the sentimental moment about to manifest here). I was kneeling in front of her waiting for the business to be done. And then she grabbed my face and pulled me in:
“That’s MY Mommy!”
Gulp. Sniff. Tear.
And that, ladies and gentlemen (but probably mostly ladies, given the blogging demographic) is how Coco melted my heart and made my house a home.
I don’t think I’ll ever forget the pride and possession that was in her voice as she said that to me. I felt like she GOT it, and was maybe for the first time ever, proud of her mama.
That’s MY daughter.
*This post was in response to MamaKat’s Weekly Writing Prompts.