18 Months Old

Today our baby is 18 months old. Asher is miraculous. Precious. My treasure. He also drives me bananas, but I signed on for bananas, so it’s OK.

The person he is today is not the person he was six months ago. Hell, he’s not the person he was last week! The rate of his changing and growing is astounding. When I speak to him, I can see him learning. I can see understanding dawning on his face all the time. It’s truly one of the most beautiful sights I’ve ever observed.

Asher communicates with great skill now, although not with many spoken words (they will come soon). The joy he experiences when he has conveyed his intended meaning is contagious. This morning, he woke up next to me, rubbed his eyes, and signed “I’m hungry. I want to eat apples. Nom. Nom. Nom.” (That was noisy lip-smacking.) Last night, Ian and I went on a date and left the boys with their grandmother and grandfather. When we picked them up later, Grandma went on and on about how well Asher communicates, how easy he is, how delightful it is to know what’s on his mind. ‘Cause he’ll tell ya. No question. He’s stubborn that way. Just sayin’.

Asher’s play has changed, too. In fact, he now plays with Lucas as often as possible. He tags/stumbles after Lucas as his big brother nimbly dodges through the house. They play Chase Me, Chase Me and Asher squeals with delight. They wrestle together; they roughhouse. Asher tickles Lucas to make him laugh, saying (roughly) “diggle, diggle duggle.” He bonks into Lucas and gets in his brother’s face. If Lucas is drawing, Asher wants to draw. If Lucas is building with blocks, Asher wants to build with destroy his brother’s block creations. If Lucas goes outside, Asher desperately wants to go too, preferably to make a bee line to the potting soil and diggin’ dirt. 

Now that Asher is walking, our house looks like a tornado hit it (OK, some of you might laugh and say it always does). What I mean is, Asher doesn’t move from toy to toy or mess to mess any more; now he picks up whatever object catches his very temporary fancy and toddles to some new part of the house and deposits it there, only to pick up something else. At the present time, there are Tinker Toys freakin’ everywhere. For Lucas, they were the perfect means of assembling death-dealing robot gladiators (Oh yes,

 , you heard correctly: ROBOT WARS à la Tinker Toys). For Asher, they were colored sticks and wheels that would be far better dispersed evenly throughout the house!

With regard to pottying, Asher still sometimes uses the potty. In fact, recently he walked over to it, sat down, and then peed. Amazing! I think he might be out of diapers by age 2 or 2 and a half, which would be crazy early. (Depending whom you ask.) We only started toilet training Lucas at 2. Asher isn’t very patient. He will happily sign potty, sit down, and immediately stand up again, peering curiously into the bowl to see the pee-pee. Often, he hasn’t waited long enough for there to be any there. When he has done the job, he proudly points, exclaims “Potty!” with his sign, and then waves bye-bye to it when it’s flushed. TMI?  

When Asher picks up a book now, he signs about whatever he sees. So, it’s kind of like watching him comprehend the book or “read” it to you. He loves picking up grown-up paperbacks, too, and spends lots of time flipping the pages with his thumb. Most of the time he is fairly gentle, but every once in a while he’ll attempt a nibble.

And the tantrums have begun. They are performed with great theatricality and seriousness. Asher sometimes flings his body backward without regard to what’s behind him, eyes closed, face contorted in agony. Other times, he gets down on hands and knees, bangs his forehead on the floor, and wails. It’s clearly, “LOOK at me! LOOK at what you’ve done to me!” This display might happen any time we say no to something he wants, or tell him he has to wait, or take something he shouldn’t have away from him, or even if I leave the room without him. 

He is developing an interest in cars and trucks. The weekly visit of the county garbage and recycling trucks is greatly enjoyed by us all. Asher points and whoops and makes little Donald Duck sounds, which I think are meant to mimic the noisy vehicles. We don’t have the toy trains out yet, but it’s really time to show him all those great Thomas the Tank Engine toys we acquired for Lucas. (That reminds me, we should send away for replacements for the ones with the red lead paint via China!) Now Asher picks up a car and makes spitty, raspberry noises while he pushes it around. 

He learns so much from his brother, too. It makes me really wish Lucas wouldn’t laugh uproariously whenever Asher throws food during a meal! Lucas is alternately having a wonderful time with his little brother and a miserable time because Asher gets so much attention. Lucas would like to kung-fu Asher to the ground about 20 times a day, and sometimes manages to get in a few kicks or strategic trippings in when I’m not watching closely. You might say the bloom is off the rose. The honeymoon is over. Reality is, Lucas is sometimes tremendously jealous. (We are actively trying to find ways to make Lucas feel special, loved, admired. It would help if he weren’t such a 6-year-old jerk lately.) It’s hard for Lucas to restrain his anger and resentment, especially when Asher is fairly rough: he hits, bites sometimes, pulls Lucas’s hair, and screams whenever Lucas touches me.

So, anyway, because Asher is now 18 months old, he is very clingy, very demanding, and very much in need of constant supervision. The other day he threw the portable phone into the toilet. He squishes food into his hair. He screams bloody murder if I get within ten feet of my computer. All this is tiresome and frustrating to me. Ian calmly pours me a drink and reminds me that it was like this when Lucas was this age—only I was actually crazier then. Ian reminds me that Asher is jolly most of the time, that he is perfect and clever and funny and healthy and adorable. That in six more months, he will be a different child—easier, more independent, and even more communicative. That we should love every moment, even the exquisitely frustrating ones because he is only a baby NOW. For just this brief moment. 

And that is a miracle.


One Response to “18 Months Old”

  • kimkimkaree
    August 2, 2008 at 4:11 am

    I know it goes so fast. When I started school you were still pregnant! Back then I thought 2010 sounded so far off! I adore Asher, he is so different from Lucas and I know you’ll learn whole new life lessons from him.


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  • About Sara

    Thanks for visiting! I’m Sara, editor and writer, wife to Ian, and mother of two precious boys. I am living each day to the fullest and with as much grace, creativity, and patience as I can muster. This is where I write about living, loving, and engaging fully in family life and the world around me. I let my hair down here. I learn new skills here. I strive to be a better human being here. And I tell the truth.

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