Wednesday, July 12, 2006

The Twoddler

Yesterday was The Girl’s second birthday. We brought up a little table and chairs from the basement into the living room, and The Wife bought a little tea set to put on it. We set it up in the living room the night before, and when she came downstairs in the morning, The Girl actually squealed with delight.

Shockingly, The Boy played nicely, even acting as a waiter while TG sat at the table! How he knew to do that, I have no idea.

The gender differences kick in early. She inherited many of The Boy’s toys, but she’s indifferent to almost all of them (except an Elmo cell phone and legos). But she loves her dollies, and the little tea set sent her over the moon.

TG is a charmer. A few nights ago we all went for a walk, resolved that the kids would walk the entire way. TG kept asking me to pick her up, but I held the line stoically for three of the four turns. On that final turn, though, her little face was just too much to resist, so she rode my shoulders the rest of the way, giggling at the altitude. It’s a dangerous lesson, I know, but there’s a level of cuteness that constitutes a kind of force majeure. I’m not made of stone, people.

For the big day, The Wife’s parents came over for a little celebration. When TW mused that TG isn’t a toddler anymore now that she’s two, The Boy chimed in, “she’s a twoddler.” (pronounced ‘toodler’) It’s a perfectly cromulent word.

TG is still young enough that we’re able to get away with avoiding a Big Party, so we’re having a series of little ones all week. My Mom came over on Sunday, TW’s parents came over yesterday, and TG’s little friends are coming over today. TG loves the attention, and thrills to every gift (unlike another child I could name, who tosses aside clothes as if they’re contaminated).

It’s heartbreaking to know that The Girl will never be this age again. She has been a remarkably well-behaved, low-maintenance baby – unlike another child I could name, who could be likened to a woodpecker on meth – but she’s slowly becoming a little girl. Someday she won’t even be that anymore. Twoddlers aren’t twoddlers forever. Someday she’ll speak in paragraphs, and decide she knows everything, and swoon over idiot teenagers, and pity her ignorant parents whose loathsome existence she tolerates only because she can’t afford rent.

But there’s time for that later. We took lots of pictures, and everybody stayed up a little late. We all climbed onto The Boy’s bed and read Happy Birthday to You, by Dr. Seuss. When I took her back to her crib, she contentedly went down for the night with her stuffed Grover in one arm and her stuffed Santa in the other. For now, all is right with her world. The rest can wait.