Toddlerhood is frustrating. Not that that's a news flash or anything, but some days it just hits me over the head. She is opinionated and stubborn and almost completely incapable of clearly communicating what she wants. There are phrases and words that I understand, but for the most part, it's like she's speaking Russian. Maybe I should take her to a medium and make sure we're not harboring the reincarnation of Catherine the Great. I know everyone is always famous or royal, but as imperious as this kid is, she must have been someone who was not used to hearing no.
When she speaks, and it is often and loudly, it is with such conviction and passion. She waves her hands around as she talks. But it's mostly gibberish. I try so hard to understand. I look around, try to find whatever it is. Sometimes if I can figure out the right context, I can decipher a word or two. And when I do, it's pretty much the most amazing thing ever. Because this little person that I am raising, the one that seems to be little more than a semi-tamed animal most of the time, is becoming a person. A talking, thinking, (somewhat) rational being.
In my current occupation, I don't get raises or bonuses or promotions. The only outward evidence of my success is the health and happiness of my child. There are days where I worry that I'm doing it all wrong. When I yell too much or we watch too much TV or don't even look at a vegetable, and I feel the weight of this task. I worry that I don't spend enough time reading to her, that her lack of speech is due to my failure to provide her the right educational activities. I feel overwhelmed and unprepared and unqualified.
But then she looks up at me, an enormous smile on her face, and says "tank yoo, mahnee" and I realize that we're alright.