Delphine is almost two and a half. Today was her first day in the preschool room at daycare, so she has gone from being one of the oldest and most senior to being the youngest and not knowing what the hell is going on. It will prepare her for many more instances of the same transition.
It was a little sad dropping her off this morning. I couldn't help looking at it from her eyes; the preschool room is bigger than the toddler room, the furniture is bigger, the other kids are bigger and louder and there are more of them, and she doesn't know anyone. It was all a little overwhelming and scary and I felt bad for her. It's hard not to want to protect her from any scary situation, even though I know she is going to have to learn to deal with life sooner or later.
Fortunately some kids she knew from the toddler room who had graduated earlier showed up, and she got comfortable. When we went to pick her up she was sitting in a circle being read to, which is about her favourite thing. Also she got Hallowe'en goody bags from the toddler room and the preschool room, because she spent part of the day back in toddlers as part of the transition process. Score!
Delphine is taking to Cordelia very well. She likes to touch her and kiss her, and when Cordelia cries Delphine likes to know why, and to help take care of her. This morning we were all sitting on the floor reading a book, and I decided to nurse Cordelia. As soon as I started Delphine went and got us a pillow, which is what Blake usually does.
She is a little jealous, especially when the baby gets to go in the sling or the carrier, but she never takes it out on the baby. She takes it out on us with the whining! And the carrying on! A two-year-old with something to whine about is like a dog with a bone.
We're starting to work on discipline, which in our case generally means "getting her to pick stuff up". She's a great one for dropping things on the ground wherever they happened to lose her interest, and between the baby and my bad back I am not much inclined to pick up her trail all day. Unfortunately neither is she. I haven't had a great deal of luck getting her to obey me when I tell her to pick things up, but I am trying to be consistent and get down to her level and "help" her pick things up and so on.
This seems to be her personal battle; I have been able to institute other rules, like "give me your jacket when we get home" and "don't get down from the table unless you are done eating" pretty successfully.
What else? She's really verbal -- she talks in whole sentences and constructs new words and new phrases using the rules she has already learned. It's cool! I can have conversations with her. She still refers to herself in the third person interrogative, though; she says "are you hungry?" when she is hungry. I'm not sure whether to go along with it or to pretend I don't know what she means and take her literally to force her to use the correct grammar. I am leaning towards the former, though; she knows I know what she means, so it's kind of patronizing to pretend I don't. And she will figure out how to communicate properly sooner or later; it's what she's hardwired to do.