There are many characteristics of a toddler, that one must not hold against them. And many facets of parenting that seem almost surreal at first, that soon become “normal”. That’s why people say things like, “it’s apparent you’re a parent when…”. But what they REALLY mean is, “here is something shocking that is only not shocking if you are a parent”. I feel like this a lot with Camilla Jane. So while it’s good for all of us to remember that this in no way dictates the rest of her life, nor do I ever view it that way; well alright, there are the few weary breakdowns where I fret that I’ll be packing adult diapers into the departing vehicle that takes her off to college, but mostly I realize it will pass. In short, I give you…the last week with Camilla Jane. Warning, this is the VERY unedited version of having a toddler.
She came into the house from outside and requested some toast for a snack. She issues a little, “sank you Mama” (she is almost always adorably polite) and toddles outside with it. I continue making a late dinner ( hence the allowed snack) and then I get that “feeling”. It’s the, “everything is just wayyyy too quiet” feeling that you get as a parent.
It downloads into your head a couple weeks after the child arrives and as far as I know it’s non-refundable and never goes away. I leave my red sauce boiling on the stove and walk out to find this. She was not only covered head to toe with dust and dirt that she and the dog had happily been digging in together (and blueberry juice from earlier), but her half eaten toast was still clutched in one hand and had gotten considerably darker in the last 5 minutes. Me, “Camilla Jane!” Then I stop and decide well I’ll just snap a quick photo and then grab it. Sometimes I do stupid things. At that precise moment, her partner in crime, the digging Rosie, seizes this distracted opportunity to grab the dirt toast from the baby and runs off with it happily lodged in her slobbering jaws. I stare for .2 seconds as I realize that the dirt covered orphan is in pursuit yelling, “hey! Hey Rosie you not eat my toast!” I yelled for Camilla Jane to come back not realizing until it was too late that she had actually caught UP to the dog. The dog is much faster than she is, I still don’t know how she caught up with the dog that fast. In fact I was thinking ‘good riddance!’ but the little stinker smacked the naughty Rosie on the nose and had retrieved the now soggy brown toast and was triumphantly holding it up to show me. I ran. It couldn’t have taken me more than 3 seconds to get across the yard, but it took even less than that for Camilla Jane to hurry and pop it in her mouth and start to chew. Me holding the child and prying her mouth open, “no Camilla no, spit it out, SPIT IT OUT!” What I retrieved did not equal what went in, but oh well. Too late. I took her grimy little hand and decided it would be best to immediately give a bath
and sanitize the whole world and brush teeth before dinner. I mean how hungry could she be, she had toast, right? As I’m wearily walking her in she looks up at me, “Mama dat toast tastes like dirt! Is funny toast!” Yes Honey, I made it dirt flavored just for you.
Later, we’re all sitting at the dinner table and Camilla Jane turns around in her seat and suddenly smacks the window behind her. Me, “Milla don’t hit the window please”, CJ smacks the window again. Me, “Milla, please don’t hit the window!” This time however, she holds out her palm, “I GOT DAT FLY!” Sure enough, there was a smeered specimen on it. Keep in mind this is the same evening as the dog toast. I try not to let her see me groan and grab a napkin, “oh wow! You’re quick, okay let’s clean your hand off now!” CJ completely insulted, withdraws her hand and informs me, “no you not taka my fly! Dis is MY fly, I get dis fly, you not taka dis fly from from me!” I’d had enough from the toast incident and quickly sacrificed the toddlers happiness for hope of less diseases, but she did bounce back quickly when she realized that her zucchini noodles were very runny and messy, therefore more desirable.
Earlier in the week, I jump onto the bed she was calling me from and lay down beside her, “what’s up baby girl?” CJ, “I need some foodie”. Me, “oh okay, how about you finish…(I abruptly turn to Grace for a minute to tell her not to bring a box of blocks into my bedroom)”. CJ grabs my head in her chubby hands and turns me towards her again, “my nana! You say, ‘want to finish you nana?” Me, “right, your banana! Want to finish the banana you started earlier?” CJ, “no, I not.” Me, “well why did you want me to say it then?!” CJ, “now you say ‘eat your nana and you watch a show’ you say dat and then I say, otay I eat my nana!” Lol Calculated little cookie.
We’re watching Mary Poppins and we get to the end where the parents are finally happy and take their kids to fly kites. I turn to find tears rolling silently down Camilla Jane’s cheeks. Me, “Milla! Are you okay, what’s the matter? Honey why are you crying?!” CJ immediately wipes them away, “no I not cwy! I jus happy! He has he’s Mama!” then she climbs into my arms and buries her head in my chest and cries for another minute. lol I think they were actually happy tears! She really is the sweetest, most sensitive of souls.
She has a book that is about “Bobo” the monkey going around trying to find his Mom. We’re sitting in church and Camilla Jane leans up to me, “Mom? I be you baby Bobo and you be my Mama, otay? Den I find you and give you ALL de kisses (proceeds to administer all the kisses)”.
My final moment from this week was in the car. I’m driving along with just her, which very seldom happens and she’s telling me about all the cars and trucks she sees. “das a red truck, Mom! Das a bue one! Green, green, Mom I see Green!” Then she gets quiet for a minute and says, “Mom I’n want a pink truck. Ina have one. Ina have a pink truck!” Me, kind of surprised, “are you saying a pink truck?” CJ feeling understood, “Yes. I wanna have a pink truck.” Now please note that normally this would be water on a ducks back and all that. No big deal, she’s 2. But it’s been a rough week with her. Rough meaning, my bathtub has never needed quite so much cleaning. And I suddenly envisioned her driving away in her pink truck with a, “silly boys, trucks are for girls” sticker on the back, organically brown clothing, with dirt toast in hand and possibly a dead fly or two on the dash. Just no. No pink trucks please.
We love you Baby Milla! We hope that your hygiene and taste in vehicles improves, but we love you so! 😉
Okay, so about the time that I started this post, I went out to find this…
I had to share. She was out building a dog house with her Father. She’s a really great helper. I don’t think he noticed anything out of the ordinary though.