Thursday, October 16, 2008

Emma the Thinker (and Talker)

I always say that one of the coolest things about being a parent is watching Emma grow up. Over the past month or two, Emma has really started showing signs of thinking on more complex levels. We'll be walking to school, and she'll ask a question out of the blue that shows she has been thinking about something for a while. She's starting to make connections between different people and things and figure out their relationships with each other. We got a big kick out of discussing in-laws with her.
Last night, I came home late after my night class, and Emma was already in bed. Either she hadn't fallen asleep yet, or my coming home woke her up. I got some food and went into the bedroom where Sarah was watching a TV show on the computer. I started getting undressed and emptying my pockets. Pretty soon, we saw the bedroom door squeak open just a crack. We knew that there was a three foot tall door-opener on the other side.
Sarah told her to go back to bed. A few minutes later, I was out in the kitchen again, and I could see her door doing the same secret crack. I went into her room and sat on her bed with her.
She said, "Daddy can we have a talk? I just really want to talk right now." First of all, that was incredibly cute. I think that was the first time I've heard her say she wanted to have "a talk" with me.
I said sure.
Then, she launched into a long explanation of why she isn't sleeping: "I'm not sleepy because first of all I just can't go to sleep, and second, I tried closing my eyes and sleeping, but I couldn't sleep, and third, Mommy's watching TV, and you're moving around out there, and you're change (coins) are really loud (when I dropped my coins into the bucket), and I don't feel tired, and the lights are on in the kitchen, and eleventh, I just don't feel sleepy. So those are the eleven reasons I'm not sleeping." I have no idea where she got the number eleven from!
She continued: "So I was thinking, maybe we could make my night time list tonight."
She has really gotten into lists lately. She has a list of things to do in the morning: wake up, eat breakfast, brush teeth, go potty, get dressed, brush hair, go to school - or something like that. If she gets something out of order, she get's really frustrated: "Oh no! I can't obey my list today!" Sarah said one day this week she was hopping around the kitchen because she had to go to the bathroom, but she hadn't eaten breakfast yet. She couldn't bear to break the order of her list. (Sarah made her go to the bathroom!) Emma needs to make a new night-time list because she tore up the old one because it was out of order.
So anyway, back to the bedtime talk, we negotiated a deal that she could make her new night-time list, and then go to bed. After a little bit of drama (which was partly my fault), she finally settled down and went to bed.

Sarah and I have decided that Emma is one part Elizabeth (Sarah's sister, who loves order and art) and one part April (my sister who is full of passion and chutzpa). That makes for one lively girl!
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