I'm very cool about not putting many limits on what my 2yr-old says or does. If you know, then you know. If you don't know, then axe somebody.
She was hanging out with me in my bedroom, rummaging thru a box of clothes that's bigger'n she is. The clothes are either too small or too old-fashioned(?) and are meant for storage, or a friend with a newborn, or sent to the Goodwill. I was watching TV and pc surfing. The child is deadly serious in her efforts to assemble that perfect ensemble and in the process is making piles of clothes all over. But it's cool. She's not hurtin' nobody... mindin' her own bidness.
The box is damn near empty. She's already settled on these gaudy, pink, silk slacks (reminiscent of something Hugh Hefner might wear around the Mansion) and is naked above the waist. She's looking for a gaudy, pink silk top, she says in so many words. Cool. "Keep looking, Baby. Keep looking."
Unable to find the appropriate garment, she cries, "Daddy, help me! Daddy, help me!"
I help her look. She watches me closely so that she can catch any shenanigans that Daddy might pull. After a thorough search of the box's remaining clothes as well as the piles scattered about, the desired garment is missing and her mind accepts that pitiful reality. She resumes her search for an alternate garment, one fitting the loud pink she already has on, and I resume MY all-important task of serving the 'net and hanging out with some apostates I know.
Eventually, she settles on a fluorescent lime green tee shirt. Taking stock of a two-yr-old in a lime green top and a pink bottom, I say, "Beautiful. That's my baby." As difficult as this may seem, she's even more satisfied with her ensemble than I am, yet one chore remains.
I've been through this act too many times to mention. My daughter is a clothes-freak and given the chance will change her clothes/sox/shoes half a dozen times a day just for fun. She usually makes a mess of the room in the process. Knowing what is sure to happen if Mother walks in, I let her know that she needs to fix the mess she's made. I softy remind her three times in a row -- calling out her name each time -- before my words sink in. Without complaint, she begins the chore.
About halfway through, the worse possible thing happens. Mom enters and loudly questions the child's mental faculties and commences to make fierce demands. I am certain that her words hurt *me* more than they ever could the baby, seeing all that I have seen. I interrupt before my anger takes control, telling her that Babygirl is well along in doing what I already asked and would you please not holler at her. Irritated for my interruption but not wanting to hit me, she leaves the room in a huff.
Babygirl quietly resumes her chore, filling the container until all the clothes find their place once more. At last, she puts the top back on. It's not perfectly placed but off to one side. I watch to see what she will do. Quietly, without a word from me, she takes a step back and realizes that something's not quite right. Taking her time, she moves the lid over to its place and fits it in perfectly. Then, without a word to me or a glance in my direction, she leaves. I am impressed, thankful to have seen all I have just seen.
I call the child's mother to have her view the aftereffects of the child's efforts.
"Look at what your daughter did," I say.
Her mother looks around the room, no complaint whatsoever spilling from her lips. She seems as impressed as I am, perhaps feeling guilty for her earlier outburst. She doesn't say a word.
"There's no reason to *ever* holla and scream at her. We have a good daughter."
Surveying the tidy room, all she says is, "Yes we do... yes we do."