Asher is still going to be 2 for less than a month. The transition from one to two was less stark and we were still counting months (why do we do that? Tricky business, that month counting) but now he’s almost to three and so much more three than two.
There are a couple of habits that we had let dwindle on out of convenience and parent-fear that we wanted to break before turning three. One of them was Asher still sleeping with a pacifier (don’t judge) and so, on the first day in our new house, we were sitting at the table with Asher eating lunch and I asked him if he would like to start sleeping in a big boy bed. He said that yes, he would, and I told him that one of the rules of the big boy bed is that he wouldn’t be able to sleep with a nu-nu (pacifier) anymore. He just looked at me and said as breezily as an almost-three-year-old can, “ok”.
Well ok then.
Ya’ll, I’ve written a lot about all that parenthood has taught us so far, and here’s what I learned from that lesson: we’re morons. Asher wasn’t hanging on to that nu-nu, we were. So now he’s turning three and he doesn’t sleep with a pacifier so we can check that off a list and go commiserate with other stupid parents about the stupid things that we do when we’re underestimating the little people in our lives. (Anyone?)
The first night that Asher slept in his ‘new’ (crib lowered without the front bar on it) bed, we were not terribly surprised to see him standing beside our bed the following morning. He climbed up into bed with us and as he was snuggling, Drew noticed that Asher didn’t have his diaper on anymore. Asher proceeded to tell us that he woke up in his bed, went to the bathroom, took his nighttime diaper off, went potty, flushed–he’s very committed to reporting on every step of the process–and then came upstairs to get us. Whose kid is this? Every morning since then, Asher goes through this little routine with a level of meticulousness most OCD patients would covet and then comes to find us or gets back and bed and starts hollering, “Mama! Can I WAKE UP NOW? MAMA! CAN I…” which is pretty funny. A weird twist is that he will occasionally put his diaper back on, but we’re working on that.
This morning he woke up and I listened to him go through all of his potty steps and then he went back to his room and got back in bed and started singing. He sang to himself for about 20 minutes flying, I think, an airplane around (if the words to the ‘song’ were any indication) and then started calling out to ask if he could wake up. So far his almost three-ness has been a lot more opinions, a lot more freak outs, and a lot more intensity, but if it also means that he’s entering into the stage of life when he can wake up, potty, and play by himself while we squeak out the last little bit of sleep that we can? Sign. Me. Up. Suddenly the child and the puppy are not seeming quite so similar.
It’s getting harder to pinpoint the big changes as they occur because it’s all so rapid-fire. Where this time last year we were able to notice new words popping out and seeing new levels of physical confidence emerge, all of that is starting to happen so seamlessly and quickly that it will just sneak up on us all at once. What is pretty amazing is that Asher is beginning to really be able to express what kind of person he is, and what kind of sense of humor he has and all of the little nuanced things that make us who we are. While we don’t have first steps to marvel over anymore, we do have the changing lilt in his belly laughter, the way his eyebrow moves when he’s speaking frankly, and his insatiable curiosity about why things are the way they are. I think Drew and I both love this stage because we’re starting to see more and more of the person that we’re spending our lives with.