My dear Paapu,

Been a while  since I wrote to you. I wasn’t away. I was right next to you, watching you grow, feeling pleased, being surprised and at times acting silly along with you :)

You are a little more than 2 years old now. But, when someone asks me, I still say “Oh, she turned two recently”. At times, however, I want to smile and tell ” She is Two going on Twenty Two really”. Here are few reasons that will show you why-

We sit together eating a bowl of fruits and I finish my portion first and you go “Good Job Amma!” patting my back.You also notice and praise with a “Good job Amma!” when I dress you up and tie your pigtails well. Role reversal at one of it’s best :)

Me and your dad have a tiff, voice levels raise, eyebrows knot, body language changes and he stands close to me with an angry face. You barge in from no where, block his way, point your fingers and shout “No Appa, No!”. You make us break into a loud laugh in the middle of a heated arguement. Do you know how embarassing it is at times? :D

I am supposed to be potty training you, correct? No, you don’t seem to think so. In fact, you think you are supposed to train me to potty train you. “No diaper Amma, only pant, ok?”. And then, you voluntarily pull me to the restroom screaming “I wanna make Potty now, lets go!” and I follow to help you like an obliging student. Stifling my laugh while you pompously sit on your potty and beam at your achievement is a separate topic anyway.

While I get dressed for a party or a evening out or to work, you never fail to compliment if you like my attire. “Nice dress Amma” you smile and I promptly check back  “Nice, really?” and you nod. You have no idea how sweet that feels. But hey, I cannot coax a compliment out of you unless you actually like my dress. Trust me, I have tried ;)

On a camping trip, I stand in front of the campfire grilling some cheese and you softly stand aside to say “Careful Amma, ok?”. Your dad hammers a nail into the wall and you are right next to him reminding “Careful Appa, careful”. How do you know when exactly to use such caring words? I wonder.

For you, salt is ‘Uppa” and Ghee is ‘Uppa” too. Pretty confusing if you ask me. But, we get by, especially since you are a pretty little assistant cook – helping peel the peas out, handing over the dried vessels, watching me cook with such appraise. I almost feel like a celebrity when you curiously ask “whattis dis?” while I carefully pick it up and say “Onion” :D

Remember how in one of your last letters I said you were fearless and walked away to explore without a backward glance? Well, that still hasn’t changed. Sometimes, it scares me when you act all grown up and start walking away. I wait for you to turn around and look for me. But, usually you are too happy smiling at strangers or plucking at a leaf on the way. Go, explore. But, stay safe. Stay near, will you?

Reading is one of your favorite things to do. You open it and hold it down on the lap, then point at the words and start reading animatedly. If only the book wasn’t upside down we would have totally bought your act.

I have such a relaxing time letting you ruffle my hair. My hair and your tiny hands are all real. But the hair brush, rubberband, hairclips and everythign else that you imagine are..err..imaginary. You can spend hours pretend combing my hair and I sit there enjoying every bit of it. Thank you my love! :)

Two year olds gorge on pizzas when they get a chance, I have seen. You are the only one in the birthday parties who refuses pizza and picks out the veggie toppings from them to munch on.”How did you do it?” , fellow mommies ask surprised. “Nothing, really”, I reply honestly, “she just doesn’t like pizzas much, but loves her veggies”.They will see you stuffing your face with cake and chocolate the next minute, but until then, I am allowed to feel a little proud about your habits, am I not? ;)

You fight with me. Loudly. Already. I am quite mad about something and say “Paapu, you are a bad girl!”. Immediately there’s a response “No, YOU bad girl!”. I don’t give up “No, YOU bad girl” louder. You stand up, point a finger and scream “Nooo. YOU! Bad Girl! OK?!”. The game goes on for a few minutes with louder and funnier faces until neither of us can stay serious anymore. Next thing we know, we are laughing and rolling on the floor together . At this rate,  all my disciplining plan can go hide its face in shame.

Tell me why you love being barefoot so much? In the park, in a backyard, on a walkign trail – you are the only kid without footwear running around carefree. Once you throw out your shoes no amount of pleading will help. I have noticed little bruises on your tiny feet sometimes, but you do not seem to mind at all. That is why you love my foot massages after bath everyday, don’t you?

Kind, smart and fearless, are you Paapu? Maybe all true. But, one more thing is true too. You are a bondhu little silly girl. Why? sample this-

” Paapu, Look up, big blue sky!”
You look up . “Yes, Amma”
” Now tell me, what is the color of the sky?”
“Mmm….Orange?” :D

Love you my darling. Stay happy always.

Tight hugs and kisses,
Your Amma
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