Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Introducing the Pants Boss

I think that last one has been up long enough, don't you?

Co made a late comment I want to respond to here instead of burying it: Co, I can't imagine going through something like this, let alone something objectively worse, on a date that other people were always reminding me of--you have heaps and heaps of my sympathy. I also think you're right--as so many other people suggested--that having more layers of good associations with the date will help me. This was only the third time it's rolled around since it happened, after all. But I'm also thinking that knowing the anniversary was going to come in its inevitable time helped me contain the story more this year than I have the previous two years. Knowing I was going to open that box up no matter what let me leave it closed for longer, if that makes sense.

So in the spirit of both adding happy layers and closing the box up again, here are some joyful things that have come along with the arrival of the birthday:

An inundation of grandparents, a birthday cake, a Glinda snowglobe, a pair of ruby slippers, a wand, an inchworm riding toy, a puzzle, some videos, a toy Muppet, a scooter, some crayons for drawing on windows, and (preparing her for her future life of peonage in the family-owned retail business) a cash register. She has played with each of her presents intensely and happily and frequently in the past 48 hours. Three is an age when most things are interesting, but I also think that the relatives just did a good job of getting her and meeting her where she's at.

Her birthday night, she got out of bed twice expressly in order to put on her ruby slippers. Normally if she gets out of bed, she just pads to the top of the stairs, but Sunday night she donned her shoes and her witch hat and outfitted herself with her new flashy purple wand before inquiring after a drink of water.


Here are some other things that have followed in the wake of three: she chooses her own pants now, in the morning--I figure it doesn't matter to me what pants she wears so long as they match her shirt, more or less, and I still get final say in her shirt. Of course she started by choosing the purple ones.

She has jumped to wearing big girl pants, even to school. I'm holding my breath, I really am, because she is still fighting us way too much on way too many trips to the potty, but suddenly she loves the big kid pants and she's doing what I've known she could do if she wanted to, which is pay attention and keep them dry, and she has been dry for two days straight now. Not overnight, she's still in a diaper overnight, but even for naps.

And.

Drumroll.

The Binky Fairy came to our house.

On the night after her birthday, we had a binky hunt. I distributed our binky stash so that there was one in every place that a binky tends to be left in our house: the sideboard in the dining room, the kitchen counter, the side of Z.'s bed, the edge of the sink. Z. and I took a basket and we hunted down all of the binkies, each and every one (there were 8, not including the one in her mouth) and she put them under her pillow (but not! the one in her mouth--until she exchanged it for the only purple one). When A. went to bed, she collected all the binkies and put them in a safe place (my underwear drawer) and in their stead she left a purple Kermit the Frog shirt of magnificent fabulousness.

Now Z. has a binky when she's sleeping or when she's riding in the car (but not when she has a friend in the car). And that's it. She misses her binky. She really, really wants a binky in her mouth, especially in the morning when she gets out of bed. It is clear that we have an addict and she's jonesing. But she's also doing it.

In the space of two days, she is transformed. No binky, no diaper butt. She has been tall for her age for ages (I'm 5'5", and her head is almost at my waist) but all of a sudden since Sunday, she has stopped looking like a baby.

I'm proud as hell.

9 comments:

susan said...

May the joy of transformation keep growing, S., so that the box eventually becomes a rather dusty thing in an attic or basement, surrounded by plenty of other memories and developments and relationships.

And happy birthday to the sparkly shoed one. I'm smiling as I picture her with all those presents.

E. said...

Happy birthday to Big Girl Z.!

kathy a. said...

woo hoo! happy happy birthday, and may the blessings keep coming!

i LOVE the ruby slippers and witch hat and wand!

my son loved his binkys [they had to be squeaky binkys], but his real addiction was a nightime bottle. we had weaned him down, and on his 3d birthday, he threw the last one out. [and was actually OK with that, being a big boy and all.] viola! instant nighttime dryness. usually.

co, so sorry about your dad. it's wonderful to take that date back. xoxoxo my nephew died on my wedding anniversary, and i was there; as much as i love and miss him, i needed to not have that date taken away forever in grief.

Magpie said...

Those are terrific milestones! Way to go, Z. And, happy birthday!

Julia said...

What a magnificent big girl you have on your hands.
Happy belated birthday to all.

Lo said...

I want ruby slippers. I am way jealous.

Jody said...

Kudos and congrats to Z!

Lo said...

We want pix!!!

liz said...

WOOT!