There have been many so-called “phases” in child-rearing that I have enjoyed. There have also been phases which I have NOT enjoyed, but this is a post about the former.
With my first child, I was not really in tune with the phenomena we parents call “phases.” As a first-timer at the parent rodeo, I lacked that stuff called perspective, and mistakenly thought certain things would last forever- colic, teething crankiness, gummy smiles, sleep deprivation. Well, I’m convinced that if you are a parent, sleep deprivation is an eternal phase (thereby not a phase at all), but you get my point. It was just as easy to live in constant dread of things that lasted maybe a few weeks to a couple months, as it was to take for grated other things that were fleeting in the grand scheme of things.
With Jack, we had some favorite phases– Mister Rogers, trucks, trains, and Sandra Boynton books, to name a few. We celebrated his love for trucks, finding work sites to drive him past, and buying him every manner of truck to play with at home. It tugs at my heart in a painful way now when we pass a backhoe or front end loader and he pays it no heed.
Right now, Jack is into karate, and I am praying that is a phase that lasts at least a few years, because I am loving it almost as much as he is.
Emily is four years younger than Jack, so we haven’t had quite as many phases with her, but right now, she is in a phase I totally dig- tutus. She wears one with everything, including sweat pants and her pajamas. She has about six different tutus, a few meant to be worn as clothing, and a few meant for dress up clothes that she inherited from some girly cousins who outgrew them.
Her favorite tutu is purple satin, overlaid with sparkly lavender lace. Seriously, when I was little, I would have gladly killed a man for this garment. And yeah, I would have worn it with everything too.
This purple tutu is meant for playing dress up, but Emily wears it almost all-day-every-day, and sleeps in it too. We peel it off her to wash it from time to time, but for the most part, we are indulging this phase. She spins and twirls and dances with her baby dolls in her purple tutu.
One day she was blissfully dancing when she fell flat on her face and I had to rush her into the pediatrician, convinced she broke her nose. Her nose was not broken, just very swollen, and purple to match her beloved tutu. The doctor chuckled at my daughter marching around the office in her footed-fleece blanket pj’s with the tutu layered on top, her owl hat with the large pom-poms, and her winter coat. My beautiful, deranged, little hippie chick.
Maybe she will grow up and become a dancer and wear real and amazing tutus. Or maybe she will lose interest in tutus altogether in a few more weeks. Either way, I’m riding out this phase for all it’s worth, wringing every ounce of pleasure out of that grubby tutu on my chubby darling.
What phases do/did you love with your child/children? Were there any phases you shudder to remember?