Though I have a certain amount of disdain for this piece of advice delivered in this fashion, and I try not to dole it out myself, I have to admit, it is a well-used saying for a reason. I squandered many a precious moment of Lilah's babyhood stressing myself out over details that I barely remember now, and that I won't remember at all years down the road.
It does get a lot easier not to sweat the small stuff with a couple of years of parenting under one's belt. And at this time of year, especially, I aim to do a lot more enjoying and a little less stressing. Lilah has gone through some absolutely lovely phases in her lifetime, and at almost two-and-a-half, there are some difficult moments, but there are many more beautiful, perfect moments that I want to savour. Here are just a few of the things that I am "enjoying while they last":
- Helping - Helping Daddy make lasagne, helping Mommy vacuum, helping to unload the dishwasher, helping bake cookies... girl loves to help! Of course, Lilah "helping" means everything takes at least double the amount of time it normally would, but we definitely would not want to discourage the urge to help at this early stage!
- Cleaning up - similar to the above, Lilah can easily be convinced to clean up her toys, especially with the aid of the "clean up" song. I'm working on teaching her the other verse of the song, but for now, we hear "Clean up, clean up, everybody do your share" over and over. And over. For as long as it takes for all the toys to get cleaned.
- Mama's girl - This is gradually changing. Until recently, I was her go-to person for everything. But now she is learning who to turn to with a particular request. But I am still her number one when she needs comfort.
- Hugs and kisses - These are doled out on request. And sometimes even spontaneously, when I'm lucky.
- Honesty - Girl hasn't quite figured out the subtle art of lying. Manipulation yes, but lying, not so much. She's like Jim Carrey in "Liar, Liar." Ask her a direct question, and she is bound to the truth.
All of these two-year-old traits? I'll take 'em. And enjoy them while they last.