I looked after my friend's little girl Lauren yesterday afternoon. She has big blue eyes and wispy blonde hair, with a toothy little grin (in fact, she reminded me so much of Heather's daughter Becca that it made me a bit teary, but I digress.) She pointed at things and said what they were, very gently stroked Jasper's fur and gave him several kisses (which were returned via a large slobbery tongue), and sat and played happily with whatever was in front of her. Jack followed Lauren closely for the first little while, imitating whatever move or sound she made. And then Babyzilla came out to play.
Jack threw himself on the furniture, frantically climbing on any surface he could. He stood on the dog to get up on the sofa more easily and at one point, sat directly on his head. He threw every ball out of his ball pit with an enormous "RAAAAHHH!" with each throw, discovered that crayons make interesting sounds when they snap in pieces, and every time Lauren reached for one of Jack's toys a chubby little hand went forth accompanied by a "na na na na na na!" and much head shaking. He climbed on top of me and sunk his teeth into me a few times.
Lauren sat on my knee, cuddled her stuffed dog and quietly listened to me read her a story. Jack ran laps around the living and dining rooms, pausing briefly to whack his hands against the closest available glass surface. Lauren pointed out parts of her body when asked, with a big grin each time I praised her for getting it right. Jack lifted up his shirt and showed Lauren his belly, then tried to kiss her several times. Lauren said "night night", "book", "doggy", "daddy", "mama", "biscuit", "milk", "baby", "bye bye", "more", and "up" that afternoon. Jack's vocabulary is generally limited to "uh oh", "hiya", "mama", "daddy", "dog", and "car", and a lot of other things that will come to mean something to grown ups one day.
Lauren left us with a wave and a little kiss (Jack finally got one too) and I started clearing up the Trail of Destruction left by my son. Are all little boys like Jack, I wondered? Why doesn't he say more words and know where his ears are yet? Are little girls calmer and do they talk earlier than boys? When it comes down to it though, none of this really matters. Although it's so difficult not to compare Jack to other children his age (reason #578 why I avoid mother/baby groups), this rambunctious little boy is the light of our lives. I wouldn't change one thing about him - and the constant picking up of toys keeps me in shape.
My Babyzilla is 18 months old today. Happy half birthday, my little dinosaur.