Simon is just about 2.75-years-old now. While much is made of the "terrible 2's," he really hasn't been all that bad. Well, not until the last couple of months, anyway.
While Simon is starting to catch up in his speech, he's also having little freak-outs on a constant basis. Instead of communicating his desire, frustration or other feelings, he slips into shrieks and yells. Words can't explain how annoying this is, and it's insanely hard to simply ignore the ridiculous behavior because you really want to just tell him to calm down and get over it. I think we've adapted to this pretty well, and we don't validate. We do ask him to use his words and tell us what he's feeling, and sometimes he'll tell us.
On the flip side, we've managed to slip into a nice bedtime routine. Bedtime has been a veritable sine wave of good and bad since Simon was born. We had a few weeks there where he wouldn't go to bed without a meltdown, and we'd give him 20 or 30 minutes of crying before we revisited him. Now, we read books, do puzzles, or whatever, then we turn off the light, leaving his "stars" (an Ikea projection lamp) on. The three of us lie on the floor, with a little blanket over him, and we talk about his day. Five minutes later, we ask him to crawl into bed, give him hugs and kisses, exchange "I love you's," and he just goes to sleep. It's awesome.
Watching this little personality evolve, one that didn't exist and was impossible to predict three years ago, is completely amazing.