There have been times when I have avoided trying to describe my kids’ personalities on my blog, because every time I attempt a draft, the words I’ve chosen have been proven wrong practically before I finish typing them. So many exceptions to every generalization I try to make. But I’m feeling a little more confident at the moment, so I figured I’d make note of it, and maybe look back in a few months and see how right or wrong I was.
There’s something about becoming mobile that seems to really highlight their personalities, and the differences between them. Maybe it’s just coinciding with the age. 10 months is so much fun, even if it’s not always sunshine and light. In the interest of full disclosure, Rebecca was positively hysterical at bedtime last night, I suspect a new tooth. And Daniel has been going through this weird inconsolable period in the late afternoon. But still, this age is way better than six months ago. The way they interact with me, each other, and the environment, their budding sense of humor… it’s a blast.
Rebecca, I’ve concluded, is an adventurous little monkey. She’s bold and seemingly fearless. I wondered for a little while if I only thought this because she was the first to crawl. But I think it goes beyond that. She’s pretty independent, and very silly. She loves making goofy faces and is easy to send into a fit of giggles. Most of the time, she’s fairly laid-back. While she has times when she flat-out refuses to smile at people who come and talk to her in the stroller, she’ll also climb away from me if she sees something interesting (like our mom/baby class teacher reading a story, that’s Rebecca in the overalls at the bottom of the frame). She’s happy to go off and do her own thing, or come over and climb on me. She’s a major climber. When she does get upset, though, there’s no halfway. She becomes positively inarticulate with rage. RAGE. Her meltdowns tend to be much more angry than sad. I think she may have gotten my temper…
The word for Daniel, I think, is sensitive. Both the good and the bad. On the down side, I think that’s where a lot of his fussiness comes from. Somewhat easily upset if he doesn’t get what he wants, and sometimes I think he’s just upset because he doesn’t quite know what he wants (just not whatever I’m doing at the moment). But where Rebecca is angry, he’s just plain upset. If something happens that upsets him, sometimes you’ll get that bottom lip start to stick out and the face crumples before he starts to cry. He has the good parts about being sensitive, too. He’s a bit more snuggly than Rebecca, and wants to be held more (lucky me, as he’s the heavier one!). He loves even watching Rebecca have fun, and will very often laugh at her. He’s really just the sweetest thing, you can’t stop smooching those big cheeks. He seems to really love just knowing you can see what he’s doing, and it makes him smile when you cheer him on.
What’s interesting is that the way they play with a toy is sometimes opposite from their overall personalities. While Rebecca can be a wild woman, chasing after the dog and using everything to stand up, she also has a tendency to be somewhat gentle with toys, holding it and using one finger to poke and explore the texture. And then, well, shoving it in her mouth with her throaty little laugh… aha, aha, aha. Daniel, on the other hand, loves to shake, shake, shake. He especially loves things that make noise when you shake them, or if he manages to get his hands on a cord or cable and it flops around when he shakes it. He just looks up at me and grins.
The way they interact with each other is just too funny. Rebecca climbs all over Daniel and steals his toys. Daniel is, shall we say, less than pleased. But he also thinks she’s hilarious if she squirms around in her high chair, and sometimes they just laugh at each other and I have no idea why. They also imitate each others sounds, especially raspberries. Rebecca’s raspberries are long and loud and forceful, and she’ll do it for a few minutes on end. Daniel will then chime in with a little pflbht. A shorter, softer little burst. A pre-verbal “yeah, what she said.” I get the feeling Rebecca will be the bolder one, the initiator, and will do a lot of talking for him. Which is not to say Daniel is a shrinking violet, but I just have a hunch that she’s the more take-charge type. We’ll see…
While they are both at the point where they get fussy or crabby if I put them down or leave their sight, and can be a little clingy with me, neither of them has really ever shown any stranger anxiety. I wonder if this is sort of a twin thing, as I’ve always passed them along to be held by other people. While they may prefer to have me hold them, they don’t actually lose it if someone else does. Thank goodness.
At any rate, that’s today’s snapshot of my kids’ personalities. We shall see if they decide to prove me wrong by this afternoon.