It's all worth it when Buddha randomly tells me "I love you Momma" or "Momma, you're the best." It's all worth it when AJ begins to understand what PRIORITIES mean. It's all worth it when you tell them..."We're going to the beach" and their faces light up.
So what IS going on with Mr. AJ and Buddha Belly?
Over the last couple of months, AJ has matured and gained more independence. He still snatches toys away from Aric. He will still have an occasional meltdown. But, he can completely get himself ready in the morning (sans making breakfast) if he had the desire to do it. He can operate all the home electronics to entertain himself or his brother. He talks about "sharing" or "doing it together" a lot more often with Buddha. He will even ask his brother what's wrong or to use his words when there is an altercation or misunderstanding. My dark chocolate baby boy is growing up and almost 4ft tall. Although he's a big kid, he still wears his heart on his sleeve.
Buddha...my buddha. He's smart and fast as a whip. He communicates as well as a 4 or 5 year old. But, DO NOT LET THE SWEET FACE FOOL YOU. He is manipulative. He is savvy. He can look into your eyes and put you in a trance. The next thing you know you're giving him a Popsicle for breakfast. He's my risk taker and dare devil. I have to watch him or he'll try to climb the largest structure at the park on his own. Although I dread the Chicago Public School system selective enrollment process, this kid MUST be tested. His preschool teacher and aide are impressed with his cognitive ability for a 2 year old. Hopefully, the school can continue to challenge him. If my kids end up at 2 different schools, we'll just have to cross that bridge in a couple of years.
As for us poor (financially and physically) parents, we're just making it all work. Buddha is back to popping up in the middle of the night. I blame my business trip to Vegas. He was doing so well sleeping through the night in his toddler bed. Then, I left. Since I've been back, it's been all about MOMMA. I'm not too sure if he thinks I'm going to disappear in the middle of the night. Or, we're having a late night party without him (I wish we were!). One night I had to walk him back to his bedroom at least 10 or more times. I kept thinking about Super Nanny. Just don't talk to him and lead him back. He used many excuses that night...hunger, pee, poop, thirsty, can't sleep, and outside noises.
When I think "Oh, I can't wait until this phase is over.", I consider that Buddha will be turning 3 soon. He will officially NOT be a toddler/baby any longer. Then, I look at AJ and wonder where did the time GO? I force myself to stop, treasure the moment, and give the kids Popsicles for breakfast.