19 months was very difficult. It's causing a bit of a shakeup in my world and the cleanup is underway.
This month Aiden spent the good portion of a day in daycare. (6 hrs) This was very difficult on me even though I don't spend that time with him anyway due to work. The upside is that it worked out very well for all concerned. jnanacandra had a day of personal work, recuperation, and gardening. (Oh, happy Cancer)
Aiden is undeniably a toddler. An independent and "WILLFUL" personality has emerged. He is more and more amazingly interactive. Yesterday, when we got home after work I retrieved the garbage pails from the curb while H & a unloaded from the car. About halfway down the driveway I bent down and opened my arms for a hug. Aiden tore into a (toddler) sprint and jumped up into my arms. It was beyond adorable.
The word, "Hi" is his mainstay. I'm pretty sure he knows what it means. Though everything is a greeting to him. Even getting attention. I think he equates it to also mean, "Excuse me." With "Hi" has also come waving. He definitely has different hand motions for "hi" and "bye"... And whenever we say, "Say 'bye-bye'" he does is farewell wave.
Eating turned a huge corner this month. He's still just as finicky as his mother about food. But I think most of his resistance in the early part of the month was his desire to feed himself. In the past week he has ... well I don't want to say 'mastered' but definitely gotten well under way with a spoon. He managed to get most of the contents of a jar of babyfood into his mouth with a surprisingly small percentage winding up on his bib or face. He's also gotten into the habit of trying to scoop food that's gotten onto his face back into his mouth. He will also grab at a napkin and wipe it around his face.
Mid week we had some roasted turkey loaf. (Yeah, yeah... I know...) I gave Aiden a plate of two small slices that had been cut up. We also gave him a toddler fork to use. He was able to take to it very quickly and entirely fed himself. This past week has also seen us ordering off the kid's menu at restaurants. We're beginning to see a lot of success there.
Beyond food there's also the new toy in Aiden's life. H & I are both habitual laptop users. (Welcome to the 3rd millenium) Aiden tends to want to jump up and start using our laptops. This can be difficult because they are fragile machines and his fingers seem to have a magnetic-like attraction to things like the disk-eject button and the power button. So, we've gotten a toy laptop for him. This serves two purposes. First, it teaches him letters. Aiden has already shown a great aptitude for pattern matching and is beginning to recognize letter forms. The second benefit is that it's helping to teach manners. We try not to take his laptop or push buttons on it while he's playing. This models behaviour on encroaching on other people's property. At the same time we get a social lesson by watching when he becomes too glued to the toy. We learn that we are modeling that behaviour as well and temper usage.
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Another note on technology. A few months ago to distract Aiden at a restaurant, I showed him pictures on my iTouch. He figured out how to scroll through the pictures by swiping his finger on it. Since then, Aiden has a habit of trying to push the pictures of buttons on my laptop screen. Today I thought to myself, "No, Aiden. Not every computer has touch screen technology." Then I realized... I have a toddler who will have had touch screen technology his entire life and has a rudimentary understanding of using it before he can talk or go to the bathroom on his own. In reflection, when I was his age there were computers. One computer would fit into a small class room and required a Ph.D. to breathe on it.
I wonder what Aiden will realize about his toddler.
Heather was backseat writing this post and had reminded me to mention sleep. I put this comment in a strange sense of tense because this is the second time I'm typing this paragraph as the computer accidentally deleted the last 3 paragraphs.
Sleep has been the major hell of the past month. 3 months ago we were at the point were napping and sleep time were at the point that we were considering leaving him in bed overnight. Then came sleep regression. The process of putting him down became a living hell for us. Napping and sleep became impossible unless we put him in the car or drugged him. (The latter of which we never, EVER did) Somewhere in the past week that has begun to also turn a corner. We're getting him down in his bed without as much trauma. H has also purchased "A BOOK" that is theoretically going to help with this. In the opening chapter is a letter from a mother who was in an almost exact state as we are in who boasts that the method worked beyond her imagination. So... we'll give it a shot.
So... now we are looking into Daycare for Aiden. This is a frighteningly expensive process costing about $900 / month. I spoke to some colleagues at work and they all blanched at the price. And when software engineers react to something being pricey... you know you're not insane. And I feel so stuffed shirt, conservative.. when I look at the price tag and think ROI.
One last note... people have been noting that Aiden hasn't been posting in his journal. I don't know if it's been a factor of being too busy on our parts or maybe some subconscious desire to make it more his place than the place we wave his arms for him like a puppet... but maybe I will at least put in back dated references to our posts so that he can look back on them one day. Maybe I'll log him in and let him bang on the keyboard a bit. We'll see.
So much ahead for him and for all of us.
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