The second time around...

Saturday, June 22, 2013

So HJ's summer has been relatively smooth so far, except for the fact that her little sis Lila has officially entered her terrible two's. It was as if a few weeks ago, someone switched our easy, mild-mannered baby and replaced her with a crazy toddler complete with ear-piercing screams, tantrums, food-throwing, pushing, and general crabbiness.

And in the midst of it all, I've realized that HJ looks like a mature, well-behaved grown-up girl in comparison, and that the second time around, it's really not so bad.

When HJ was two, the constant tantrums and refusal to go to bed, the throwing food from the high chair, the resistance to the car seat, all were cause for constant anxiety and even a few sessions with a behavior therapist.

This time around, Sol and I look at each other, and sometimes we just have to laugh. 

Granted, things were different with HJ -- the tantrums were more intense, she couldn't express herself verbally, and we were completely novice parents who had no idea what we were doing. But going through it with Lila all over again makes me realize there's probably no need to freak out. HJ went through it all and worse, and we all survived.

Even Grandma from Korea has been remarking how HJ eats so well, sleeps well, and takes good care of her little sister, whereas with Lila, she tends to say things like, "Wow, this girl is never going to take no for an answer... She really isn't going to give up on anything when she gets older.." I have to smile because those are the very things I'm so used to hearing about our first spirited child, HJ.

But with the two-year old stage, also come all the cute and funny things that make this stage one of our favorites as well. Here are a few Lila-isms that I've noted lately that have made us all laugh...
  • Replacing "horn" in her favorite song with her favorite food "corn" as in "The corn on the bus goes beep, beep, beep, beep, beep, beep...."
  • Calling mommy's yoga mat "a yogurt mat" which again references another favorite food... I think I'm seeing a pattern here!
  • Telling mommy she is riding in her "red dragon" (aka "red wagon")
  • Making binoculars with her tiny chubby hands whenever she thinks she needs to see something far away
  • Asking for "shaving cream" for her strawberries (aka "whipped cream")
  • Getting panicked because "Grandma eating my blueberry!" when we just bought a giant container from Costco
  • Learning the words "colonoscopy" and "Dr. Petrungaro" after accompanying Grandpa to a few too many doctor's appointments
And after every little or big tantrum that Lila has, one thing I love seeing is how HJ does her best to make her little sis feel better, even if sometimes she's the cause of the tantrum, and even if her answer is to give her candy or chocolate to make it all better. I'm sure it's complicated for HJ now, still wanting things for herself, but not wanting Lila to be sad. She's learning, though! After Lila calms down after a big tantrum, HJ likes to say, "Are you ok, Lila (or Ya-ya as it sounds like when HJ says it)... Are you happy now?" And thankfully, Lila's answer is usually yes, even if it's only until the next crisis hits...

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