Life with a THREENAGER

Today, my daughter said the four words every mother dreads hearing – “I don’t need you”.  She’s three.

It was literally overnight that she morphed into this mature little person.  No longer a toddler even, but a full-blown miniature adolescent – the #threenager.

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I was recently introduced to this term when my friend, with a now four-year-old, proudly handed down this shirt to my daughter at her birthday party.  Thanks for the heads up, Brandi.

In all seriousness, in the last two days I’ve started being LOCKED out of the bathroom when she does her business, told “she wouldn’t wear that shirt because it didn’t match her pants (she was right), given the ultimatum of “buying a new toy or making her cry” then picking out lip gloss over said toy.

I can’t keep up with all the “words of wisdom”, backseat driving advice, and looks of disdain that I’ve been given while failing miserably at this parenting thing.

I realize you veterans are out there chuckling and thanking God you are through that stage.  Why wasn’t I warned they grow up so quick??? Yeah, I know I was, I just can’t do anything to stop it.

Seriously, I wasn’t prepared to see my sweet Little get so independent and self-reliant so quickly.

However, on the upside, I seriously feel like I have a new best friend… 

We giggle and do girly stuff, we carry on full, in-depth conversations, (even though they often involve imaginary characters), and we can eat lunch together out in public now without the fear of an episode that could rival the Exorcist.

Also, I’ve found myself asking for her opinion when I can’t make up my mind.  I used to think it was so dumb when I would see Moms asking toddlers “which one do you like best?” when deciding on a new dress, but I’m one of them now

I’m also amazed at how much she teaches me…

Here are a few examples of what she reminds me of daily:

  •      Give hugs and kisses often
  •      Be quick to say I’m sorry
  •      Say “thank you” for the little things
  •      When a bad mood or temper tantrum arises, realize “ain’t nobody got time for that” and quickly turn it into a smile
  •      Allow Good Vibes Only – Don’t argue around her.  She will quickly tell you “Chill guys! Let’s be happy!”

So even though there are some serious battles of will-power, lots of “I can do it myself”, and the ability to eliminate naps yet still stay up all night, I’m pretty proud of the way my Threenager is turning out.

I know her independent, adventurous spirit will serve her well in the years to come.  My hope is she remains fearless and forge her own path through this Big World when the time comes.  

But I can hold her hand for now (when she lets me) and let her know I’m here as long as she needs me.  

It’s funny, she realizes her days as my Little are numbered as well…  

Yesterday, she climbed up on my lap and ask me to “rock her like a baby”. So I did of course, and we just stared at each other for a few precious seconds.  

Then I began to sing, “Rock-A-Bye, Baby”, to round out the whole experience…

She quickly raised up, gave me look of shock and said, “Mom! I’m not a baby anymore! Don’t sing that” And the moment was gone.

But I still have those few seconds to cherish, and will continue to cherish every moment I can of these sweet, fleeting years.  

So next time a battle of wills ensues, I will try to just take a deep breath, throw my hands in the air and “feel the rain”. Because it won’t be here for long.  And one day I’ll wish I had just one more of those #threenager moments

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Do you have a #threenager? How do you deal? Let me know in the comments!

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