Dear BD --
It's a total cliche and a good song from Pat Benatar, but love is a battlefield. However, it's not a battlefield you can leave. You're stuck out there, for good or for ill. There is no retreat.
Why do I bring this up now? Because honestly, this month you were working my last nerve and there was no way in hell I was going to leave you or any of this. I love you. But heaven knows, sometimes you do stuff I don't like.
That's the best way to describe this past month. Your will is getting stronger and stronger -- it's like a preview of the Terrible Twos. You scream, you cry, you pitch fits, you defy my requests and now, you've begun hitting me. It's like dealing with an angry drunk sometimes. And then there was the sleeping thing which was about as much fun as a nail in the eye.
This is the month where I keep reflecting on a quote I heard Dan Savage say once about parenting. Parenting is the job of taking the little sociopath in your kid and beating it out of them so they can be a productive adult.
It's admittedly hard sometimes. Those who know you are probably thinking, "Benevolent Dictator? But she's just a sweet, darling child." This is where I admit something -- I am soft. I am a soft parent. Because you've been such a sweet, mild child (in comparison to other kids) for the past 15 months, it's literally a sucker punch when the little devil comes out to play in you.
But I wonder if that's part of parenting -- just when you think you can predict and flow with everything, the game changes. Maybe it keeps you humble, I don't know.
Of course, right when I'm ready to pack it up and head to Tijuana and not come back for awhile, you surprise me with a sweet hug, a hysterical belly laugh or being easygoing and amiable. You love reading books and not just your board books, but also Terry Pratchett. Your reading taste is excellent.
You're so outgoing too -- you're greeting friends with hugs and demands to read books. And they love it too. I'm amazed that you're so outgoing and personable. I hope that no matter what, as you get older, you keep that extroversion, that fearlessness to approach others and be friendly. Because without a doubt, you, my dear, have a great public face. I predict world conquest for you, if you stay this way. And odds are, I'll still be your minion.