Oh sure, they can be dramatic and include an overabundance of temper tantrums. They are trying, and they will keep you on your toes, but the two's have a beauty to them. I listen as my little monster learns to string words together, witness
him saying "please" and "thank you" without prompting. Watch as he develops his own ideas, as he appears to demonstrate a sense of humor. There are days he wants me all day long, and other times he politely tells me good bye and he's staying at his Oma's house, even when he hasn't been invited. He follows after his brother whenever he can, chanting "play, Gus, play," and he let's me know insists on wearing a hat anytime he goes outside. If you ask him what animal he is, he will answer cow or cat depending on his mood.
He climbs on to my lap to steal Brussels sprouts or half of the Ruben I get when we go out for sandwiches after church. I can't eat an apple around him without him claiming it for his own, but mostly he just wants to eat bowls and bowls of yogurt. He turns on the record player and fills the room with the sound of static. He doesn't sleep through the night.
And yes, he will crash to the ground in anger and frustration, bury his head under his hands, forget how to use the words that usually come so easily to him, crying real tears. But I am not willing to call any of it terrible because even those tantrums are sort of wonderful.
I worry what this will all look like in a few short weeks, how he will adjust to a new little sister. But quite frankly, Arlo was never meant to be a youngest child. We all knew it from that start.