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Why does my 2 ½ year old seem more like a teenager? First of all, Dylan sometimes calls me mom. She says it in this annoyed teen tone like I’m taking way too long to respond to her needs. Can’t I still be mommy? She’s only two for heaven’s sake. I’m half afraid she’ll start calling me by my first name.

Also, I don’t get to pick out any of her clothes anymore. This was one of my favorite things about having a daughter. But she isn’t interested in my opinion. Each day, she carefully considers her options and then chooses a shirt and usually a pair of shorts. There are cute clothes in her dresser drawers that have never touched her body. No matter how much I plead, she will not even consider an adorable eggshell long sleeve shirt I bought at a sample sale last month. And no matter how quickly I try to put it on her, she immediately removes this pink retro wonder woman t-shirt she got for her birthday. I asked her, “when will you wear this wonder woman t-shirt?” She responded, “later.” I’m beginning to think “later” will never come. At one point this past winter, we had three weeks of the same red shirt and red corduroys.

Finally, these days she often ignores what I say all together. My questions are met with long silences. I know she hears me. I can prove it. When I threaten no Elmo or no books, suddenly she is answering the question with enthusiasm. Well, she does still like Elmo. So there must be a toddler in there somewhere.

kelcey kintner