Back story: DS is 15 months old and has always been a high needs baby/spirited toddler. I've read Dr. Sears books and Raising Your Spirited Child - the latter helped immensely, giving me tools to help with transitions (he needs the next day's events spelled out, for example, step by step - then I remind him what's going to happen that day, in the next few hours, in the next few minutes, over and over and over - but it helps alot). He has trouble unpacking his day at night, stopping activities, slowing his body down and settling to sleep, but we've found a routine that helps, among other things. He's always been extremely sensitive to crowds, noise, stress, etc. and we keep our outings short.
He is extremely persistent (he was never the baby that you could redirect to another toy - he would remember and INSIST on the one he had - as a toddler, ditto for activities and everything else), intense, SUPER active, and has always (since early infancy) been easily frustrated by his limitations, exploding like a volcano. He still needs to nurse down to sleep and needs me next to him, even for naps (which I do, because it's crucial he gets rest), though this is sloooowly improving. He is loud, wild, and a total chatterbox all day every day.
He is quite bright (was putting 2-3 word sentences together before 12 months) and has recently become very interested in letters, and can identify a few (totally led by him, I don't initiate or push - he points and asks, or tells me what he thinks they are, finds more of the same on a page, etc.). He can follow complex directions. He figured out on his own very early that keys go in locks, how to turn things on and off, can stack several thin, cylindrical blocks on top of each other without help - things like that. So, no motor/mental delays or anything. He is, by turns, the most serious baby anyone has ever seen and the most happy, joyful, friendly lil guy.
I could go on and on - point being, he is just very, very, VERY.
As a baby, he was super sensitive to clothing and cried and cried every time we dressed him (in soft cotton - learning how to help dress himself helps). He can't sleep with a blanket on, he screams if he's barefoot on sand at the beach (has to wear sandals even in water) and, recently, completely loses it (purple-faced terror screaming) if water touches him. He can play with it in the sink (loves to pour from cup to cup) and even in the bathtub if he's only in it up to his ankles - but if the shower sprayer hits him with a drop (which occasionally happens because I have to bring him in the shower with me, to avoid a certain complete and total meltdown), he loses it and can't recover. Ditto if I pour a cup of water over him to rinse him off (even if it's just his body). Washing hands can be a battle.
Ok, if you are still reading - I guess I'm just checking in - is this still all normal? I think it's just his temperament - he likes to feel in control, he's very particular and sensitive - but I guess I want to make sure. Any thoughts (or bathtime ideas)?