I have hesitated writing about this post for a long time now. Most of the reasons are personal, but in general, I feel like we live in a very competitive parenting community and admitting your child isn't perfect can be difficult.
Kennedy is a brilliant, energetic, and brave little girl. She has blessed our lives in so many ways. But she definitely marches to the beat of her own drum and has to do things her way, when shes ready.
Take talking for example. She's difficult to understand. 99% of other children will be interacting with their parents and their mom or dad will ask them to repeat a word like truck, shoe, door, etc. And usually, the child follows suit. Kennedy DOES NOT DO THIS. In fact, the more we ask her to say something, the more she refuses and we won't hear the word again for months. She cannot be told what to say. The only time we have been able to get her to repeat anything is when she is really, really tired and not really with it anyway. It's taken time for us to learn that if she says something, we can't make a big deal about it because then she won't do it again. It's frustrating.
Also, ever since her first birthday, she has preferred jibberish to any form of understandable language. For a year and a half now I've waited for that jibberish to make sense and it still doesn't entirely. I can catch words I recognize here or there and she does spout sentences that make sense, like this morning she couldn't find her gingerbread house and said, "Uh oh, where'd the house go?" but there's still a lot of her speech we don't understand. Also, she doesn't like to finish her words. Cup is "Kuh", House is "how", down is "dow", etc. Usually this is a sign of a hearing issue, but she definitely doesn't have a problem hearing things, as far as we can tell. And we can't correct her or she gets upset. So we've resorted to just repeating what she asks for. "Ok, I'll get your cuppppppp" with an emphasis on the missed consonant. We're confident these issues will work themselves out, but it has significantly delayed her speech. I was really, really worried about it a few months ago, but since then have come to terms with it and have just been consistent with helping her say the words right. That and she has made enormous progress lately. She doesn't have any comprehension problems. She understands us perfectly. It's just letting her go at her own pace.
Another point of irritation, and this one really doesn't have a right to be since she's not even remotely "behind" on this topic, but I keep getting asked about it, is potty training. Nope, we're not potty training and I don't foresee it happening in the near future. I had hoped that she would be potty trained before the baby came, and I guess there is still time, but we shall see. I don't want to force her. She doesn't seem to care much about it. She used to come and tell us when she was poopy but that stopped when we started getting excited about it. She does love to sit on the potty, even though nothing ever happens, so when she asks we let her if it's a convenient time. I keep waiting for the day when she actually pees or poops and then we can show her that's what it's for. But she doesn't care about it right now. Cory has been so cute with her. He would kill me if he knew I was posting this, but sometimes when he's about to go to the bathroom, he will kneel down and talk to her in that cute daddy voice and explain that he is about to go poopy on the potty LOL. It's hilarious and awesome at the same time. Again, someday she will get it. She's just so dang stubborn.
Lastly, I'm glad I don't have a super girlie-girl, but I am a little sad that Kennedy does almost nothing that resembles a girls behavior. She's obsessed with cars and trains. She also loves animals, dogs and horses mostly. She freaks out at any train movie and every semi-truck we see is a choo-choo. Now that we're at my parents house she has access to Barbie's and ponies but the only time she ever touches them is when they're in the way of her cars or trains. Her favorite movies are The Polar Express, Chuggington, Madagascar, Ice age, and Tangled. Yes, Tangled is a girl movie and I about came out of my skin when she asked to watch it again, but she brought me the DVD and asked to watch the horsie movie. So the only thing she likes is the horse. Brilliant. I'll take what I can get I guess. She has no interest in choosing what to wear or getting herself dressed. She does say things are cute at the store sometimes but I think she just copies me. I bought her a Rapunzel bath robe thinking she would like it and she FREAKED OUT and started screaming and trying to pull it off.... I'm not sure what to do with her.
She prefers jumping off of high furniture, climbing anything she can (this one secretly makes me proud), being pushed fast in shopping carts, being thrown around by daddy, and playing outside and getting dirty over anything else. She's a thrill seeker and a very energetic little girl. She doesn't care about dolls or being like mommy. She does have a very nurturing side though and is showing more interest in babies. She will wrap her stuffed dogs up in blankets and call them her baby, even though she has dolls she can do that with. But whatever. And she's very tender and gentle with them and gives them sweet kisses and rocks them in her arms. Let's hope she's the same with her little sibling. But overall, she's basically a boy. She even gets proud of herself when she farts loud. I mean, come on!
So that's an explanation about Kennedy in a nut shell. She's independent, stubborn as an ox, and has to do things at her own speed. She's not stupid by any means. She CAN say plenty of words, is capable of understanding what going on the potty is, but she just doesn't care. It has to be her idea. So we're taking things at a Kennedy pace for now. We love her so much and each child comes with their own set of challenges, and I know she will have many more. But I wanted to document and maybe explain for some of you who may be wondering what is up with her right now. That's our little nut-case in a nut-shell. I'll be sure and update when she decides she wants to act like a normal toddler. Or like a girl.