Dear Maggie Moo Margaret Jane,
You are four – what a mix of big girl, big sister and big helper while still holding strong to the night time toddler rituals, most notably the pacifier. I finally pulled the plug on that ritual just a month after your birthday. As is true to your nature, you balked but then accepted the inevitable. You also never give up. Still crying for your pacifier at bedtime, in the car and whenever you sense my weakness.
You talk all the time. So much so that I honestly don’t always listen. I just add the obligatory reply when you ask, ‘Right momma?”. I’m not even sure why you ask me anything because if I tell you an answer, you are certain to disagree and tell me what you believe to be the right answer.
You are nearly as big as your sister, which leads me to sometimes forget you are only four.
You love taking baths and playing with playdough or anything sensory. You are smart, in more ways than one. You will pretend to not know how to do something so you can get the attention of an adult.
You have your dad’s extroverted nature and charm. There are no strangers to you. Walking through the grocery store, you say hello to every single person, telling me loudly when they don’t respond in kind. You look forward to engaging with people in a way this introvert will never understand, but always admires. We both LOVE listening to you introduce yourself as “Maggie Moo Margaret Jane Rinehart” with confidence that suggests there is nothing odd about having five names.
You have yet to learn your power, when you look up at me with round, wide eyes, full of innocence and hope and ask for something in the sweetest, most polite voice neither your dad nor I can say no. I think you can hear our hearts explode with love.
Currently your biggest challenge is pronouncing the word yellow – it comes out ‘little’. When you slow it down, YELL – OW, you can say it. Before you know it
You are hilarious, interesting and so much fun. You are also always thinking about others. You will bring me the last bite of your candy or letting your sister play with a toy first.
As I post this, almost 6 months past your birthday, your speech is already clearer and I’m constantly surprised by your vocabulary and imagination. The other day, you saw a young tree with a protective fence around it through the car window and you said “aww, that little tree is in jail. Isn’t that sad momma?” Another day on a walk you were inventing a game where we weren’t supposed to walk on the cracks because you said they are “dangerous”. I mean, what four year old uses the word dangerous?
You are your father, with all his charm and intellect also comes what we’ve coined, transitionally challenged. Transitioning you from bed to the bathroom to getting dressed and out the door in the morning might be most exasperating part of my day. But you’re teaching me to be more patient so we can all start our day in a good mood even if we are a half an hour late all the time.
You will do great things my love. You make the world a happier place and there is no greater gift!