well, just like christmas, new years eve with small children is a little…different…than perhaps previous new years eves ever were. i would still describe them as “crazy”, even more so, but a different kind of crazy. not the kind of crazy that comes with drinking heavily, wearing snazzy clothes and dancing to a thudding bass line like it’s 1999. more like the kind of crazy that comes from kids running/crawling all over the house, dragging out all the toys onto the living room floor, then proceeding to trip on them, jumping on the beds, all that good stuff.
this year, just as last year, ruth didn’t quite make it to midnight. she put in a valiant effort, though, and made it all the way to a solid 11:30, be it a cranky, temperamental 11:30. then, also as last year, greg and i were left to sit in front of the fire in peace and watch the atomic clock make its ascent to midnight, pondering our year, the best and worst of, and the year that lies ahead.
we both agreed that finding out that i was pregnant was the highlight of the previous year and we are both looking forward the most to meeting our son, seeing what he looks like, holding him, and witnessing the first traces of his personality in 2013. i guess all that is obvious.
i wrote a post last year on new years day about the things we thought might happen in 2012. ruth’s first haircut was back in the spring, maybe april, but just the bangs, which have been cut numerous times since then in order to keep them out of her eyes. her hair in the back has been cut once due to a tree sap incident that had to be remedied. she has just recently begun to use utensils, mostly forks, with any kind of consistency. spoons are still beyond her for the most part. the scooping motion is surprisingly advanced and balancing food on a spoon is harder than you’d think. potty training efforts have begun somewhat in earnest. we’ve bought the potty seat, the m&m rewards candy, she has the big kid underpants, which she doesn’t like, she’s rather go comando, and she will sit on the potty, every other day or so, for a couple minutes and say she’s pooping or peeing in the potty (she never actually has). this usually results in many useless toilet flushes and wasted toilet paper, which she enjoys tearing off and shoving into the toilet. a few months ago, it was my “goal” to have her potty trained before the new baby arrived, but now i see the uselessness of these types of goals. basically, i would just be setting myself up for disappointment, stress, and failure. i’ve become a lot more laissez faire about the whole thing, and now my motto is, “it will happen eventually”. the tryke…well, you know about the tryke. i won’t even mention it.
her second birthday, which we were particularly looking forward to, came and went with no particular ceremony. the biggest thing has been her language acquisition, which came on a bit like gangbusters around 21 months, and seems to have taken off like a rocket from there. it has been great being able to talk with her about certain things, to know her mind better. and, you just can’t beat some of the cute-ass things new speakers will say, the mispronunciations are priceless. greg and i became an uncle and aunt again, so, that was a big thing. ruth loves her new little cousin. other than that, the year passed by with very little pomp and circumstance, but i would call it a good year. i solidified a few relationships with some parent friends, have gotten to know myself much better as a parent, and in short, feel much more comfortable in my role as home maker/parent. i have gleaned a few good recipes this year, have learned a lot about my own space requirements and how to go about meeting them. i turned thirty, and with that, i feel like i am more self-aware than ever, have, perhaps, the best perspective on life that i have had yet.
i am looking quite pregnant these days and i look forward to enjoying the rest of my pregnancy and our time left with ruth and ruth alone. she still has not felt her brother’s kicks yet, so that will be very exciting, and also, ruth’s reaction when she comes face to face with joel, which we are well aware, might be a total let down, even a disaster. the rest of the year will, i’m sure, be a complete whirlwind that we won’t surface from the depths of for a long time, learning to juggle two kids and each other. i am excited for ruth’s third birthday and hope to make it in some way special, even though it might be a very small, understated affair. i look forward to her continued language and cognitive development and can’t wait to see how she will change in the coming year. it is my goal to still find time to spend with just ruth and to somehow ensure that gaining a brother is more a positive experience than a negative one. we’ll see how that goes.
so, i say, to you and yours, a happy new year.