My Dearest Toddler

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Categories Birthdays, Celebrations, Development, Independence, Toddlers

This month you turned 3 years old. It’s hard to believe three years have passed so quickly. When a teary-eyed Mama looks through old photographs, the round squishy baby you used to be is no more. You have become a smart, beautiful, caring, independent, self-confident little girl.

You are so tall now that turning on the light only requires you to reach on tiptoe. You can dress yourself, put on shoes, and get in your own carseat. You were fully potty trained by 2 years 5 months, and now you use the big toilet and wipe. You can wash your hands, get in your highchair, and feed yourself.

This year, your language exploded, and not just in one language but two. It’s incredible to watch you work out something in your mind and put it into words. Your face lights up when someone helps you with what you’re trying to say and they get it right. It is just amazing that you are able to translate from one language to the other effortlessly, and instinctively you know which language to use when. Mama is so proud of you when you can walk up to complete strangers and carry a conversation.

You are so smart. You study things with focus and concentration beyond your age, then you ask a million questions. You constantly surprise Mama with an insane memory sometimes going back a whole year, and your ability to apply knowledge in new situations will take you very far in life. Your favorite thing to do with Mama is crafts and reading before bed. That is Mama’s most treasured time of every day as well, when the babies have gone to sleep and it’s just you. Your favorite games are hide-and-seek and “monster” with Daddy. And you’re pretty good at cleaning up all your toys too.

But sometimes you don’t follow the rules. One time Mama will never forget is a few months ago when you sneaked a fruit snack pack out of the pantry and hid under the covers to eat it. This was the first time you moved the step stool placed at the sink for hand washing, the first time opening a snack package by yourself, and the first time you deliberately found a hiding spot to do something you knew was wrong. You learned your lesson about getting hungry if you don’t eat your meals though.

This was a very eventful year for you. Before you even turned 2, you found out that you weren’t going to be an only child anymore. How you would take it is what Mama was most worried about when your sibling turned into TWO siblings. But you have become a big sister with grace. It is so beautiful to see how much you love your DiDi and MeiMei. You are the best role model Mama could ever hope to have for them. They will look up to you forever, and very soon they will be your best friends.

You have grown so much in this past year. You have become so independent that Mama doesn’t worry about you being on your own. But the day will come that you will part to go to school, and Mama cries just thinking about it. It is so very hard to let you go, because you will always be the first baby. So once in a while, Mama is relieved to be able to catch a glimpse of the old you. The little wrinkle that’s left on your ankle from babyhood, the expression on your face when you kiss your blanket, the way you look when you first wake up from a nap. Please don’t grow up too fast, baby.

We are all so lucky to have you. You are an amazing little girl, and Mama loves you very, very much.

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lunchldyd is mom to 3 year old boy/girl twins and their 5.5 year old sister. She is now teaches part-time to juggle the needs of her young children. When not at work and the kids are asleep, she is addicted to watching TV and sometimes sacrifices sleep to read in bed. She lives in the Los Angeles suburbs with her husband, three kids, and two dogs.

One thought on “My Dearest Toddler”

  1. What a beautiful post. I suspect your daughter will some day read it and know the love with which it was written.
    I must confess that 3 was our hardest year. Infancy was hard, of course, but I found the Terrible Threes to be more of a challenge to my parenting talents. I wish you the best!!

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