Thursday, July 23, 2015

The Second Child...

Lila is on the move - she crawls faster than I walk sometimes, cruises around our sofa and coffee table, has started climbing onto stools and other low-lying surfaces such as the dishwasher, and walks quite well while holding onto our hands. We broke out Rebecca's old plastic walker, and yesterday she began to slowly master that too.

I am ready for her to walk - I really hate the crawling stage, when they are licking the floors (or is that just our child?) and picking up every piece of dust / hair / old Cheerio / other assorted crap that is apparently all over our floor they find because that's eye level for them. Also, crawling in public places is even worse than at our apartment - at least there I know whose Cheerios and hair it is.

We have an annual family trip in a month, and I definitely want Lila to be walking before that. Rebecca was only seven months the first year we brought her there, so not moving yet - that was perfect - and then the next year she toddled around at 1 1/2 years old. Having Lila crawl all around the pool is just not as appealing as her walking, so we're doing a bit of walking boot camp to make sure she's ready by then.

But - am I really ready for her to be WALKING!? That makes her officially a toddler, and hardly a baby anymore - which as we know, I'm okay with - but it also means... she will be even more of a terror than she already is!! I'm telling you - this girl is sweet as pie, but into EVERYTHING - cabinets, climbing shelves, eating shoes, licking the dishwasher, turning on the DVD player and eating the disc that comes out, sitting in the fridge, pushing items off the ledge of and into the bathtub, and the toilet - well let's just say, we now keep the bathroom doors and commode lids closed.

Rebecca never did any of this, I swear. That girl understood when we said no, and never tried whatever antic it was again. I never got why people needed the plastic guards for the front of their cable boxes and DVD players... until we had Lila. She has singlehandedly proven the worth of every childproofing (or as Evan calls it, "Evan-proofing") invention out there.

I've talked to so many people about this - the second child being crazier than the first - and SO many say that this happened to them too. I've come up with three reasons why:

1) Duh - they want to be like their older sibling. When Rebecca makes noise - ANY noise - it is like a bat signal to Lila. Her head whips around to find her sister, and she immediately must go to wherever she is. Which Rebecca loves, causing her to make even more noise than she used to (if that is possible), starting the never-ending cycle all over again. Don't get me wrong - nothing makes me happier than the two of them playing together and watching the amazing bond they are already forming, and I always stop whatever it was I was trying to get done to let them have their time together.

2) There is such interesting stuff around the house now - when Rebecca was born,we had toys suitable for her or else boring grown-up stuff. Now, there are Lila toys, Rebecca toys, in-between toys, art supplies and grown-up stuff... which, incidentally, is apparently not boring at all to Lila. Seriously, hand that girl a remote, cordless phone, cell phone, tissue box, bowl, spoon, or anything else that is not a toy and she is all about it. But don't you dare make it a Fisher-Price version of any of those items - what do you think she is, a fool?!

3) I'm not able to sit with her 100% of the time. With just Rebecca, I was either with her or doing something for her - now, I have tasks to accomplish for both of them - food or bottles to prepare, clothes to wash or pick out or change them into, diapers to change or a tush to wipe, toys or dressup outfits to put back in their rightful place (ha! yeah right.)... It's a never-ending dance, and Lila doesn't seem to like it.

We bought a playpen for Lila, thinking that being inside of that with all of her toys would be great and allow me the freedom to accomplish all I have to without worrying that she was a foot off the ground somewhere, but she stands at the edge of it and screams bloody murder when you put her inside. So we use that quite sparingly to say the least. Instead, we either carry Lila around while we do things, let her crawl behind us whining as we do them, or throw the girl a remote control to get her to sit still while we take care of what needs to be done. Whatever it takes.
Caught amidst a gathering of her favorite thing - shoes.
I recently took my first long, solo car ride with the girls. Two-and-a-half hours down to Margate NJ with just one stop at a Target so Rebecca could go to the bathroom and Lila could eat a pouch. By the last half hour, Lila was D. O. N. E. with that car seat and would not settle down. I frantically searched the passenger seat for anything I could throw back to her to occupy her time, hands and mouth - and laid eyes on Rebecca's Croc. Yes, the one she had worn in the pool that day at camp. Much like a puppy, Lila has a penchant for shoes - licking, sucking on and taking bites of them. She can hone in on a pair from across the room and be next to them, with it in her mouth in a flash, it's actually impressive. So I am not proud of what happened next, but am proud that I had the instinct to wipe it down with an antibacterial wipe before tossing it to Lila - and wouldn't you know, not another peep for the rest of the ride. Hey, whatever it takes, right? Sigh...

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