18 Months - How Piper Is Growing

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

WARNING: There are lots of pictures in this post!

My project for today was to install Piper's photo album (with updates) over on my SmugMug site; I didn't realize until just now that today is her 18-month birthday. I think I should make cupcakes for dinner.

After a year and a half with this little ball of energy, spunk, and precocious, I am still not sure if I would dare to attempt life with more than one child. She keeps me so busy, emptying anything that can be emptied, getting into as much trouble as one curious toddler can in any given ten-minute span. Today, she started climbing everything, and I had to transfer all of our out-of-reach clutter collections to our bed. It is just a matter of time before she's pushing chairs up to my counters, and then...

There are days that I know I'm going to lose my mind, days when we don't get anything done, days that we share mutual temper tantrums together. And there are days that she squeaks and squeals in her happy, high-pitched chatter about everything and anything, making me wish that I'd never forgotten what all that means in baby lingo.

She has such a list of words now - I don't even realize she's saying them all the time, because I know exactly what she means by her very pointed gestures. She is gradually adding words to the gestures.

"Kitty" is still a favorite, now for the animal, though, not for everything else. She has learned "dog" and "down" and "done" (accompanied by the funniest grin ever - I still haven't managed to get that one on camera) and "Dad," which transfers into "that," which I think she learned by looking at her own pictures as we asked her "who is that?" For a while, she was calling herself "Tat" because of this, we think. She refuses to say "Mom," except at night when Pete goes in and she wants me (and then I don't hear her!), but she knows "shoes" and "this" and "toes" and "piggies." She is also fluent and enunciated in her "Yes," "yeah," and "no, no, no" (complete with head shaking).

She is growing more passionate by the day, both in affection and in affectation. I have to learn not to laugh at the temper tantrums - she is so funny throwing her bit-sized fits, I can't keep a straight face to discipline her! She does "bonks" with Daddy and "hugs" with Mama, and she loves her cuddle time.

Her pediatrician told us when she was 12 months old that the end of the nursing would be her decision; she was right. Our little pistol knows what she wants when she wants it, and it's taking a bit of imagination and a lot of understanding for me to figure a way around her. At least I have some idea how patient God is with ME. My little girl and I aren't so different.

I feel as though I will never love her enough; we have such a clash of wills sometimes, and such opposing ideas of what we want to do in any given moment. It has been a relief for me to remember over the last couple of days that when I was a little kid, I did little kid things by myself, and the last thing I wanted was a parent involved sometimes. I see Piper learning to play by herself and reading her books to herself and I am afraid I'm neglecting her by not being in her world every minute, but in reality, I will never be able to be in her world every minute.

She lives her every moment to the fullest. She is all there, all the time. She keeps me real, makes me crazy, and we have so much fun together sometimes.

People keep telling me to "just wait" for Piper to get worse when she gets older. I don't know if I can handle worse, but maybe it won't be as bad as it could be if I keep taking time to know the little person she is. Pete and I didn't create her; God did. I can only watch in wonder as He continues to grow her into the person He wants her to be.

To see more of Piper's photos, click here to check out Pip's new web album!


the Joneses said...

The EYES! Piper's eyes have always been luminous!

-- SJ

Kelly Sauer said...

Yeah, I can't help photographing her eyes. There's so much life in them all the time; I can't get past them when I go to shoot the camera!

S. Mehrens said...

Happy half birthday to Piper (a little late). I can't believe our girls are a year and a half already! Love the pics, thanks for sharing. :)

Angela Klocke said...

What a beauty you have!

dancebythelight said...

I agree, her eyes are beautiful! I love the picture of you lifting her up at the beach!

Melissa Stover said...

those are so beautiful!

Angela Fehr said...

Such a fun age - my youngest is 2 1/2 and the last year just flew by! As for the "getting worse when they get older part", there is definitely a lot of training going on in the first four years or so but it can be so rewarding. One book that has helped me so much (my three children were born in a 3 1/2 year time span) is Tedd Tripp's "Shepherding a Child's Heart." Very Biblically based and very challenging to me as a parent.

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