Like most parents of 2-year-olds, I am quick to complain about what my toddler is doing to live up to the billing of the "Terrible Twos."
Tonight, I witnessed something that makes this age group rather... terrific.
Around 7:30, Jacob and I were playing with his Mega Blocks (oversized Duplos) and watching an Elmo DVD. I told him it was getting close to his bedtime so we needed to start cleaning up the blocks that were scattered across the floor.
He shouted "NO," stomped his feet and ran away to pout in the corner.
Terrible Twos at its basic level.
About 10 minutes remained on the Elmo DVD. Rather than completely ticking him off, I sought a compromise.
I called him over. He slowly walked toward me, head down, bottom lip protruding.
"We can play until Elmo is over. OK?" I said.
"Kay," he replied cheerfully before sitting down to play with the blocks.
Short time later, the credits began to roll. "OK Jacob, Elmo's over," I told him.
Before I could remind of the second part of our deal, he already had three blocks in his hands and was walking toward the bag.
My jaw hit the ground. I was floored. I couldn't believe what I was seeing. My son had remembered our agreement and was fulfilling his half of the promise without even a reminder and some usual prodding.
Seamlessly he collected every block, gently placed each one in the bag and then carried it over to its designated corner of the room.
I gave him a hug and told him how proud I was of him. A big smile across his face told me he was proud for himself, too.