a day in your life

To Paul: this is how you spent the day you turned 2 and a half years old.

We meet first at about 12:20am. You have been moaning plaintively, like a morose Victorian heroine, or a line-drawn Edward Gorey character, and I’ve barged into the room to ask you what the problem is. You seem surprised to see me, which means I certainly should have stayed away. After a hug, you settle right down and go back to sleep. A few more outbursts ensue throughout the night, but you recover on your own.

Seven hours later, you burst out of your room the moment the magic light turns green, crowing to me in amazement. We’ve had this clock for over a month, and it still makes you more excited than Christmas morning. You are concerned that Annie will switch off the beloved green light and hover protectively around the clock until you decide you’d rather end it yourself than live with the risk that she will do it.

You look at me in surprise: “I’m tinkling right now!!” you announce. “I have a LOT of tinkle! I should go potty!” We unburden you of your warm, heavy diaper, and you sit on the potty, for practice. You’ve done this only a half-dozen times at home, but plenty at school, and Ms. Bertha told me the story just yesterday of your first actually-peeing-on-the-potty achievement at the end of last week. You’re on your way, kiddo!

We put on jeans and boots, obtain a gentleman’s C in hand-washing and tooth-brushing, and you check all the boxes on your list. We head downstairs. You serve yourself big scoops of strawberries and pears, and a bit of oatmeal on the side. After some running around and one minor tantrum at not getting to press the button on the toaster oven, we head out the door. You and Annie are jazzed to help roll out the trash bins, and actually manage to get them halfway up the driveway yourselves.

This is genuinely helpful.
This is genuinely helpful.
Your boots, you tell me, are good for "kicking dirt."
Your boots, you tell me, are good for “kicking dirt.”

We buckle into the carseats and decide on the Moana soundtrack to take us to school. I clarify plot points all the way there. We hold hands to cross the street, and you run down the hallway to your class, landing definitively in the entryway, stance wide and ready for action.

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With a hug for Annie and two kisses for me, you head to the table for applesauce, and go on to a day of Panda-ing. Ms. Natalie makes a volcano for you. You eat, play, and nap.

At 4:30, Shanna picks you up. You get loaded into the car and then make a detour back into school so Annie can pee. On the drive, Shanna notices that our taco truck has moved; you tell her it’s because the wind was blowing the tacos away.

You eat tortellini for dinner and play with water bottles from the cabinet. The Roomba comes up, and you reminisce about “Mr. Roomba”—i.e. the Craigslist buyer—coming to take it away. “I’m really sad,” you tell her. I cannot believe this is true. But I also can’t believe you remember this mundane event from more than a month ago, so who’s to say?

Bath- and bed-time arrives, and you do your usual thing. Night night, Mr. Paul.

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