Every day, as a first-time mother, I reflect and can definitely testify that children do and say some interesting things. My seventeen-month-old daughter keeps me and my husband busy and entertained.
Lately, Nandi has been demonstrating two distinctive personality traits: jealousy and what I call a “diva-like” attitude. For instance, my husband and I have always shown affection, to one another and to our little one as well. It comes natural to me. Growing up with a mother who gave me plenty of hugs and kisses, with “I love you,” sprinkled into daily conversation for as long as I can remember, it became automatic when my baby girl came onto the scene. But it seems that Nandi doesn’t approve of her parents hugging or kissing anyone, except for her, of course.
When my husband gets in from work, he’ll give me a kiss and a hug, but he has to do it quickly, or the “affection police” will literally come running (a.k.a. Nandi). She’ll let out her warrior cry and come charging toward my husband, pushing him away from me. The first time it happened, we were amazed. Now, we know to always include Miss Nandi when kisses or hugs are exchanged. That seems to be working, so far.
But now I need to share an example of baby girl’s “attitude.” For the past month or so, whenever we tell her to do something she doesn’t agree with, she’ll get upset. I might tell her to put something down before she breaks it or to stop running before she falls in the kitchen. When she doesn’t feel like obeying, she’ll pout and run off to a corner, cross her little arms, and look back at us with a scowl on her face. I’ll laugh, let her have her “moment,” and five seconds later, she’s smiling and leaping into my arms. It would be so nice if all disagreements ended so sweetly amongst adults, but I digress.
As I shared earlier, my sweet pea never allows a dull moment to go by in our household. In fact, she comprehends more than we think. She’s becoming a semi-expert on body parts, eagerly pointing and saying just where her eyes, ears, feet and tummy are located. But let me focus on the tummy. Being about seven months pregnant, I’ve been trying to explain to Nandi that she’ll soon be a big sister and that there is a baby inside Mama’s tummy. I’d pull up my shirt to show her my humongous belly and say, “Baby. Your little sister is growing inside Mama’s tummy, Nandi.” She’d give me (or so I thought), this nonchalant look and focus her attention on something more interesting.
Well, low and behold, the truth came to light when I picked her up from daycare one day. One of her teachers told me that she had been vocal all day (as usual), but she said that Nandi did something out of the ordinary. “Nandi was running around the room lifting up her shirt and pointing to her stomach saying, ‘Baby, baby’!” I couldn’t believe it – all that time she understood what I was saying.
I told my husband what she did, and he found it quite humorous. I guess we need to watch what we say around her. As she gets older, knowing Nandi, our “business” will be in the streets each and every day.
Yep, I totally enjoy watching my little angel grow. And I look forward to seeing how she adjusts to being a big sister soon. I can only imagine the adventures we will have.
Chandra Caradine is a Sr. Public Relations Specialist for Texas Health Resources, Mom to Nandi and soon-to-be-Mama to another baby girl due in 26 weeks.