You know, as a mother, your child is always exceptional.
"Tommy is rolling over at 2 months."
"Little Jane slept through the night her first week home from the hospital."
"Sally was potty trained at 15 months."
"Mark was reading chapter books at the age of 3."
Most of the time we are totally fooling ourselves. Oh, and seriously annoying our friends and family with our status updates and false reports.
I am no different than any other proud momma. I like to think Lakin's a little exceptional too. But like all moms, I might exaggerate or over estimate just what my girl can do.
I took Lakin for her two year well baby visit. In case you are wondering, Lakin is continuing to thrive on the growth charts. There was a slight dip in weight but still well on the curve. We had a very unfriendly nurse with a German accent. She weighed Lakin and measured her head and the only thing she said was, "Hmmm, she's a big one." Um, thanks?
There's a chart of developmentally appropriate activities that I was asked to read through and put a checkmark by the things our child was already doing or had mastered. I filled the form out while Lakin scribbled on her coloring sheet and I was kind of impressed with all the things our girl could do. Things that, according to the development chart, were reserved for older children. I confidently checked off several marks, some ranging all the way into the 4 to 5 year old category and could feel myself swell with pride. Some of the things I checked off because I was certain it was something Lakin could do if simply given the opportunity. I guess I was being a bit generous with those check marks.
Here are a few of the items I marked as mastered:
- When asked, for example, "What is an orange?" answers, "A fruit."
- Answers questions like, "What do you do with your eyes? ears?"
- Asks questions beginning with "Why? How? When?"
- Answers questions like, "What do you do with a cracker?" "A hat?"
Even though I couldn't think of a time when I asked Lakin these things point blank I knew she did know what to do with a cracker or a hat if given one and she knows oranges are fruit and that she loves to eat them. I might have jumped to a few conclusions, but come on, I knew she understood the concepts.
The physician came in, took our info and looked over our chart. She asked, somewhat incredulously, if Lakin was really doing all these things. I am certain she wanted to call me a liar for some of my claims but she was trying to politely get me to fess up on my own. I stood my ground and she finished the check up.
Chris found our copy of the chart when he got home from work that day and he also questioned the credibility of some of my claims. After great debate we called Lakin into the kitchen and tried out some of the questions from the chart.
Me: "Lakin, what is an orange?"
Lakin: "It's orange, mommy."
Me: "Yes, but what is it?"
Lakin: "Yummy, I want an orange. Orange, mommy."
Me: "What is an orange, Lakin?"
Me: "Lakin, what do you do with a cracker?"
Lakin: "Oooh, I want a cracker. I want a cracker."
Me: "What would you do with a cracker if you had one? "
Lakin: "Where's the cracker, Mommy. I want it."
Me: "Lakin, what do you use your eyes for?"
Lakin: BLANK STARE
Me: "Your eyes! What do you do with them?"
Lakin: "Where's the crackers, Mommy. I need a cracker. May I have a cracker, please."
Um... Perhaps I might have jumped the gun on a few of those claims.
Or perhaps, my daughter has a one track, cracker-loving mind.