The Texture Of Things

Dear Tot,
the “You Big Girl” edition

December 4th, 2007

You are 3.5 today. And just like when you turned three, when prompted, you are refusing to answer with your accurate age. For a week after your third birthday, you insisted you were two. Then, on and off you’d say “I’m three” like it was some unwieldy burden. Seriously, is three the new thirteen? Another week passed before you consistently answered “three,” yet I still doubted your commitment for weeks.

In an attempt to get the better of you, for the last month I’ve been encouraging you to take on the label of “three and a half” when people ogle you and squee and beg me to tell them how old you are. It has not worked. You are certain you are only three. In fact, that is what you say. “I’m only three years old today.” You almost seem to apologize to the squee-ers on my behalf when you say it.

“Only three today.” As opposed to five minutes ago when you were telling me a story from your youth. You know that ‘long ago youth’ that passed practically millennia ago, except you remember it all in striking detail? That one. “Yesterday, when I was one, I was one years old that day and I was a polar bear and I eated a smoothie. Hey! Mommy! Can I have a smoothie?”

To be honest, I like 3.5. You are incredibly verbal and clever, yet you are like a cat always in the presence of a shiny, dangly thing – ever distracted into some new thought. Except when someone wants to know how old you are. That issue you think is settled. Well, guess what, child: Nuh uh. Today, you are 3.5.


  1. coffeypot says

    Don’t most women lie about their age? Seem natural to me that she won’t ‘fess up to her real age.

    December 4th, 2007 | #

  2. KLee says

    Yeah — the mercurial nature of the toddler set. Offspring ALWAYS wanted to be older than she really was — when she turned three, she started saying that she was “almost four!” When she got close to her tenth birthday, she freaked a little, and decided that being double-digits was going to suck, suck, suck.

    December 4th, 2007 | #

  3. Mary G says

    Hi there! Just found your blog via Andrea’s. What excellent posts. Give the tot some time to gather the idea of older is better. My grandkid glared at me last night when I gave her age as four. “I am four and a HALF,” she corrected. Oops. This time last year she didn’t grasp ‘half’ is what I am thinking.

    December 10th, 2007 | #

  4. admin says

    Thanks, Mary G.

    I will give her time on this because honestly one of the best things about the tot is how she just doesn’t seem to care about anything other than the present. She lives in the now and she is who she is – what does a number mean? It’s just a number. I am often astonished at how much I can learn from her.

    December 10th, 2007 | #

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