My baby is now three.
Blowing out the candles on the Mainly Music ‘cake’
People kept saying to me ‘Gosh, that’s whizzed by!’ Nuh-uh. Two felt loooooooong. Chip is a challenging kid who keeps me on my toes. He has oodles of energy, much of which is spent testing every boundary known to toddler-kind. Chip has a strong personality with big emotions. He can be exhausting and exasperating, AND hilarious and cheeky in equal measure. Many times I have thought ‘It’s just as well you are so cute!’
From about 2 and a half, he went through an aggressive pushing and hitting stage that seemed to go on forever. And truth be told, he’s not quite out of it yet. But hey, he’s three.
Over the past few weeks the changes in his behaviour as he moves into his ‘threenager‘ year are quite pronounced, and rather delightful.
I CAN DO IT! Chip is a very independent guy, but he has cranked this up full dial. He currently runs about our house with a chair so he can get things from the fridge or cupboards himself, and – most fun of all – turn the lights on and off.
WHY? This is his favourite word. Every. Single.Thing. must be questioned. ‘Okay, it’s time to go.’ ‘Why?’ ‘Oh look, it’s raining.’ ‘Why?’ ‘Do you want peanut butter or jam?’ ‘Why?’ ‘I think Mayor Goodway from Paw Patrol is definitely on psychotropic drugs.’ ‘Why?’ You get the picture. If you have a bad case of the whys in your house, hang in there! Sure, it’s weird to have your every utterance questioned, but it doesn’t last long. And also, this is how they LEARN. Don’t interrupt that, even though it makes you want to have a nice lie-down in a sensory-deprivation tank.
YES, I HAVE HEARD OF THE THEORY OF RELATIVITY. Three-year old’s KNOW stuff. They’ve got skills, man. Any attempt I make to teach something in his orbit of interest is met with a scornful eye-roll and groans of ‘I KNOW that, Mummy’. And if I get my backhoe loaders mixed up with my excavators, he will be sure to point it out.
WHY, INDUBITABLY, MY DEAR WATSON! Chip was an early talker, but just lately his conversational skills have increased in fluency. He’s capable of speaking in quite long sentences, and telling reasonably complicated stories that generally involve bad guys getting their comeuppance.
I’M SUPER, THANKS FOR ASKING. Like most three-year old’s, imaginary play now takes up a lot of Chip’s play. He likes super-hero stuff – although I don’t yet let him watch Batman/Spider-Man etc because it’s too dark and violent. He likes to be Maui (from Moana), and Optimus Prime (from Rescue Bots) but is equally into Bob the Builder, Fireman Sam and Postman Pat, those everyday, working-for-a-living heroes. A favourite book is The Astonishing Secret of Awesome Man, by Michael Chabon, which I highly recommend to parents if you want a giggle.
MULTIPLE PERSONALITY DISORDER. Chip announces ‘I want rice bubbles for breakfast’, or ‘I want a drink of water‘ and then howls forlornly when presented with said item. ‘I don’t want rice bubbles!’ ‘I didn’t ask for water!’ No amount of reasoning with him that Mummy, Daddy and his sister all heard him ask for it, will persuade him otherwise. It must have been Not-Chip. And do not get me started about the theatrics if we give him the wrong cup, or cut a sandwich the wrong way, or even worse, cut his bread at all. We have managed to alleviate some of these tantrums by simply fostering his independence (see above). I allow him to cart a chair around so he can help himself from the fridge and cupboards. I even purchased those pouring containers for storing cereal so he can easily fix himself breakfast.