Suddenly my girls are noticing the difference between having someone’s attention and not having it. Obviously, they’ve been aware of the idea of attention for a while – if they wanted it and didn’t have it, they would have a hissy fit. But now, I’m noticing something more…purposeful going on. They’re starting to notice when people are paying attention to them, and adjusting their behavior accordingly. It’s…cool…and frightening…to see them move up in the socializing-with-other-humans realm.
Yesterday one of my friends came over during the day, and the girls were totally showing off for her. They were hugging and giggling and wrestling around – which is something that they’re been doing for a while, but normally they’re over it and either hitting each other or moving on within two minutes or so. This time it lasted about ten minutes, and they were picking their heads up to make sure she was watching every few seconds. It was clear that they were continuing to be unbearably adorable so she would continue paying attention to and gushing over them. I can’t say I wasn’t amused.
The flip side, though, is noticing when nobody is paying attention to them – and taking that opportunity to do things they know they’ll get yelled at for. So, for example, I’ll be changing a diaper, only to turn around and see the other one sitting on the coffee table. Or, I’ll come out of the bathroom to find one (or both!) standing on the couch, just waiting for me to notice them. It’s pretty clear that we’ve moved past the point of “I don’t understand this is bad I just want to do it” and into the stage of “I know I’m not supposed to be doing this so let me wait till nobody’s paying attention” with a little dose of “wheee attention when they notice me”.