Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Cooper: 3 Years

January 2015


Sincerely, Liz inc
You are three! I just can't believe it. It feels like yesterday that I was writing about how hard it was adjusting to being a new mommy, how hard breastfeeding was for us, and how stressed you were making me when you were a newborn!

Now you are a little boy! I'm not sure where the past three years went. You have grown SO much. You are incredibly smart, and I'm not just saying that because I'm your mom. You speak a language that sometimes I think only I understand - because it is so complex for your little body, that others don't understand what you're trying to say or why you're saying it. You correlate things so well - and have an awesome memory.

You can identify a few letters, mostly the ones in your name. You remember songs that I didn't even know you knew. We sing together every night before bed, a song I made up a long time ago, and now it's a must for you. Daddy or I sing it, and you hum along. You request songs in the car now, and you will sing to Natalie if she's crying.

I'm almost positive you will be left handed like your mommy.

Banana yogurt is your favorite these days. Along with raisins, cereal, PB&J, mac&cheese, chicken nuggets, peanuts, pretzels, milk, and grapes. Pretty standard diet for a three year old, I'd say.

We are struggling with potty training you because you are SO strong willed. You do NOT want to sit on the potty, ever.

You've moved up to the 'big kid' room at day care - 3 and 4 year olds. So you're having a hard time adjusting to all new kids, new teachers, and new routines, including potty training at school. You used to love going to school, and would wake up on the weekends wanting to go. But now, you usually say 'I don't want to go to my big room, mommy." And it breaks my heart every single day. I know it's one of those things I have to do as a mom, and it's the hardest thing I've had to do, to date. It will only get harder if I succumb and just pull you out of daycare because I feel so sad every day, because eventually you will have to go to Kindergarten and we really won't have a choice in that matter. Your new teachers say you're quiet, which we know isn't true of you, and that you keep to yourself. You came from a room where you were king of the castle, knew how everything worked, had a great group of friends, and LOVED your teachers! I know they are treating you well, but I think you're just well outside of your comfort zone and don't love going anymore. Mommy is trying her hardest to push through these tough transition weeks until you make some new friends and start loving going again.

Mommy and Daddy struggle with finding a balance for you - you are so strong willed, and sometimes very defiant. We have a hard time finding something that will motivate you to listen to your parents and follow directions. I know this personality trait will serve you well when you get older, as long as we can get a handle on it now, and direct you in the best way.

You can recite a few books, and will read them to Natalie on occasion. Books like Five Little Monkeys, Are You My Mother?, Go Dog Go, and Hand Hand Fingers Thumb. We read at least 2 every night, more if mommy is feeling generous.

In your short three years, you've become very set in your ways. You love routine, even though your daddy's parenting philosophy is "a routine of flexibility". We are in the thick of the toddler years - better known as the threenager. "But I wannnt that one. No I don't want that one." You change your mind like the weather, at least 10000 times a day. It does become exhausting. You are finding your voice, though, and forming your own opinions, so I can't get too mad at that. Your daddy took you to the zoo the other day, per your request from the day before. You said, "Daddy, I want to go to the zoo tomorrow and feed the giraffes lettuce." I mean, how can you ignore that?! So he took you, and you told him "Daddy, the tigers are my favorite because I like their stripes." I'm not lying, I don't know any other 3 year olds that speak as well as you do.

Mommy finally caved and turned your car seat forward facing. You're loving it so far, and so is daddy!

You continue to amaze me. Every single day. You are becoming your own person, and it's awesome to watch. You have shown great compassion for your sister, only recently starting to get a little jealous, but mostly very concerned about her wellbeing. Always running to comfort her when she's crying and sharing your toys with her. You dish out the unwarranted "I wuv you's" all day long. It's the greatest feeling in the world to hear you say that, and that you've missed me.

I pray every day for your safety, and that we will be the best parents for you. You are a challenge, to say the least, but my most rewarding challenge ever. I love you so much sweet boy. We can't wait to see what this year has in store for you!