My loveygirl, you are turning three tomorrow. I just put you to bed for the last time as a two-year-old and tried to explain what birthdays were - the day each year that your mommy had you, that you were born. I don't think you understood, though you may have since you really understand, remember and ponder just about everything these days. The Whys have started, and I never really know enough to satisfy them, though I try my best. The memories that you pull out of thin air boggle my mind, and I often have to think hard but can decipher even the most random references you make. We met someone named Jessie, and you remembered that Erica Lakind's teddy bear has the same name, something you learned months earlier when we visited their new apartment for half an hour. Seriously.
We have really become best friends recently, and that brings along the good with the bad. Your best friend is the person that makes you laugh the hardest and most often, and who brings out the best in you, but can also push your buttons like no other since they know you so well. Yep, that's us! We have the most fun together, you and I and The Daddy, and we laugh, sing, dance and play most of the time these days. Candy Land, Zoominoes, puzzles, books, TV shows, songs and movies fill our days. You remember lines, sayings, quotes and songs and repeat them constantly, and you assign all of the people in your life roles from each of these - sometimes the three of us are Nemo, Dory and Marlin, sometimes we are members of the Paw Patrol or characters from Aladdin or a random show you fell in love with called Tree Fu Tom. We willingly act these out and call you by your chosen name, since if we don't you say, "I'm not Rebecca, I'm _______." (Nemo, Ryder, Abu, Tom...). Then, on a dime and for no reason at all, you become frustrated, angry or sad and have a bit of a meltdown. Sometimes you yell at us or purposely do something that you know you're not supposed to, and while we are working through this with you it in turn makes us frustrated, angry or sad! We try not to have our own meltdowns and to stay calm, but admittedly don't always succeed - welcome to the 3s is what we've been told by friends who have been down this road before!
You have also developed a quirk where you want to be like whoever we are near, even if we aren't necessarily playing with them. This means if Amanda has her hat and gloves on, you better have a hat and gloves too! And if we are in the playroom and someone has a dress on, we may have to come back upstairs to put on a dress too and avoid the aforementioned tantrums (something Mommy is much more apt to do than The Daddy, for sure)! It really gets quite intricate, I must admit, but I'm usually willing to play along.
All in all though, you are still the most awesome kid around. A month ago we went on vacation together to Puerto Rico with Lulu, Amanda and Ryan. The daddies stayed home to work and it was a long six days without them. I was so nervous to be without The Daddy - he is such an integral part of us, and helps me SO much with you that I wasn't sure how we'd do without him, especially in a strange place with a strange crib and strange food and two (2!) four-hour plane flights. But there was no reason to be scared - as you have always done in the past, you proved to me over and over that you are a cool, fun, roll-with-the-punches girl. You were amazing on the plane, both times, including during the delay in the airport on the way home. You slept like a champ for five nights in a pretty small pack and play. You had a great time swimming in the pool and playing with your cousins, and were so sad when it was time to come home, until you realized that meant seeing The Daddy. It was all you talked about the whole last two days I think! Admittedly it was all I thought about too.
We had your birthday party yesterday, and you had so much fun - we did it at Kidville since you are so comfortable there and it was great. Tattoos, play-doh, art projects and blocks to start off, some time running and playing in the gym and then chicken fingers, pizza, fruit and cake to finish up. We didn't sing Happy Birthday at your request, and even still you cried after from what I think is a bit of anxiety towards either the attention, noise or combination of the two. You quickly got better once you got to lick the frosting off of your candles! You got so many fun little presents and it was really the perfect way to celebrate with 20 of your friends and all four grandparents.
I can not believe that three years ago today, The Daddy and I drove through the Lincoln Tunnel to check into the hospital, a trip of which I still remember every second. I was so nervous to meet you, to find out who had been kicking me and hiccuping in there for the past nine months, and to see who you would become. I could not have imagined someone that brings so much to my life. Someone who makes me laugh out loud constantly with the hilarious, amazing, grown up and wise beyond her years words she says, tear up with pride by doing the most mundane task, and full-on ugly cry when I think of the years that have some how already passed and how quickly you are growing up. I can not wait to see what else you've got in store for us, Babylove... my newest and bestest friend.
XOXOXOXOXOOXOXO to my still-two-year-old-daughter for at least tonight!