Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Sam at 22 Months

This past month has been one of the best in her development as well as one of the most trying.

First, the bad.

She has become increasingly violent with her brother. This month she found a closed pocket knife the cleaning ladies left out and she whacked him in the head with it. Needless to say, I did not take this well and the three of us went off to the pediatrician where we were told--after a 45-minute evaluation--that Sam is "scary smart." I am loath to say that my child is a "genius" or "gifted" because I absolutely hate when parents say that stuff about their kids. It is not a competition and I hate how those comments make other parents feel. But this month I am accepting that Sam is very curious and is retaining knowledge in a away that is quite advanced.

I am proud of her (although I take no credit), but am worried she will be bored or that she will eventually be socially ostracized. I am slow on following up on some of our pediatrician's suggestions because I do not want to hear that our child needs a special school or is different. I will get on the ball with this, but am really trying to just see what develops. All kids just advance at different rates and maybe she is just a bit faster now. We'll see.

She knows all of her letters (upper and lower case) on sight and can spell and read many words. The whole world is letters to Sam. She spells almost everything she sees and is fairly obsessed by letters, wanting to "read! read!" all the time. She can read several words, including "moon," R's name, her own name, "stop" and "car." My guess? She will be actually reading books before she is 2. Although she is less interested in numbers, she has started to recognize them on sight this week.

She also has learned all of her colors this month and is particularly fascinated by colored font and telling us that "the R is red" or "the G is orange." She started saying her name and speaks of herself only in the third person--"Sammy is happy"; "Sammy wants milk"; "Sammy goes night-night." She says "bless you" when people sneeze, which is adorable.

One of the things about Sam that I have always admired and loved is her fierce independence. She slept through the night at 6 weeks, never needing to be rocked or nursed. She has never cried when I leave her, whether at daycare, in the gym or with my parents. She is teaching herself how to read. She puts herself in time-out when she hits her brother by closing her bedroom door, crying for a minute, letting herself out and then admonishing, "Sammy say sorry to Anni--Sorry Anni."

Potty training has been no different. About two months ago we bought a potty when Sam became obsessed by all things bathroom related but never felt like dealing with it with the new baby and all. Sam has other plans. She is basically in the midst of potty training herself. She is done with diapers and want to go on the potty. The other night she peed in it and I am sure within the month, she will be fully trained. Of course, I did nothing, so I take no credit. My child is really an independent wonder. Sometimes it scares me. She is like a tiny woman in so many ways and it is easy to forget she is not even 2-years-old yet.

Sam's memory is astounding. She remembers things that happened months ago and refers to them often. At Whole Foods there was a dog outside the store one time in July and now Sam points to that spot every time we go and says, "Dog!" She remembers that Whole Foods has cheese and she remembers that she likes the Gruyere better than the cheddar before we even get to the samples. When I misplace something, Sam can usually help me find it.

I love Sam, but I have to say, this month she kind of unnerved me. "Scary smart," indeed. She is always processing, always plotting and I hope she will use her skills for good, not evil. Because right now? It could go either way.

Her new fave hiding place:


Kristi said...

Can Sam come to NY and potty-train Isabella using her independent usage model?

You've got a smart one there, that's for sure.

Agent Saskia said...

Happy Thanksgiving!

Andromeda said...

OMG I am so neurotic about the gifted/education thing I cannot even tell you. V knows (is obsessed with...) her letters too and I basically don't talk about that because I don't want to be one of Those Moms -- I'm not interested in competing, I don't want people to assume I'm status-seeking or pushing her or delusional -- and it's just stirring up all these issues from my childhood (where my unmet needs as a gifted student caused no end of trauma), and there's just not much safe space in our culture to talk about that sort of thing so, yeah, totally freaked out.