My bff’s little baby, soon to turn 4, is heading off to kindergarten and it hits me that this time next year I’ll be that momma, wondering where the time has gone and why my baby “suddenly” feels so grown-up. Some days I want Ryan to hurry up and learn to do things on his own (like pedal his tricycle and do poo-poo in the “big toilee”- as he calls it), put on his own socks and shoes.
And then… then, there are sacred moments like now, where I’m laying here on my “big bed” watching him lull himself to sleep with his newly prized possession, his beaver stuffy (a gift from his cousin “Dom”), as he tenderly covers his beaver up with his blankey and then carefully rearranges it so that his own toes are also covered. My heart does a little flip as he looks so small and vulnerable. I don’t want to let him go. But go he must. In the direction that all of us before him have gone, to forge our own path and blaze a trail that only we can blaze; a story that’s been uniquely fashioned for only us to experience. My hope is that I can set him free with the confidence and courage and faith in Jesus and himself, to do great things and leave the world a kinder place.
But I just want to pause a moment and record the simple joys of my special time with you until now my little man.
I love how you are determined to drink out of big glasses and coffee mugs all by yourself but refuse to eat food on your own, or pedal your bike (though you love pushing it).
I love how juice makes you so happy, and how sparkling water makes your nose twitch and scrunch up. I love that you call oranges, “oh-wee” and that despite repeated prompting and teaching you say “oh-pee” (open) to articulate instructions about both opening and closing/shutting, and turning the pages in your books. But I totally get, on a personal level; English is my “second language” too.
I love how you say green (“geen”) and that you’ve mastered the pronunciation of the word “purple,” but won’t say (or can’t say) F or R (that’s a tricky one for all of us).
I love that you wake up each morning and want to climb into “Mami, Tati bed” and snuggle before we start the fury of the day. I love that you are the one to say “pay” (pray) when we eat “papi” and go to “big nani.”
I love that you want to drink your chocolate milk in bed each morning with daddy and I while we drink our coffee.
I am amused by how you automatically assume all green coloured food is “eeeww” and won’t even give it a lick before rejecting it — your signature way of testing out any new menu item is to lick it with your tongue before granting passage into your mouth.
I love how you sit with your books and call me beside you to, “sit down” and “reee book” as you point to the letters with your finger and mumble repeatedly “a-b-c.”
I love that you can’t resist throwing (anything) despite consistent and repeated timeouts to curb this. Again, daddy thinks it’s because your throwing arm is destined for greatness. So, as a concession I’ve given up telling you not to throw EVERYTHING and ANYTHING, and now limit my nagging to rocks and dangerously big or heavy objects projected towards other people or the windshield while I am driving. I think it’s only fair.
I love that bath time is still your favourite and that you’re no longer afraid of the shower, but have taken to holding it and hosing yourself down with it, and the ENTIRE bathroom. No joke. Like, every time. No matter how much mommy tells you not to make a big splash “outside the bathtub.”
I love how you scrunch your face and nose every time you take a picture, and say “cheese” with such confidence; and how you insist on seeing every photo and video, such that I can’t really take any while you’re looking because you’re kind of into yourself already…. crap. I’m turning you into a “selfie” king, although I sure hope not. I’ll just chalk it up to the fact that you’re just learning about photography and you’ve never before experienced the wonder of a smartphone.
Elmo is still your fav to watch and read about, and your trains are your favourite thing to play with. Although you also do a great rendition of Jimmy Hendricks on your “ni-ni-ni-ni tar” (guitar); you have four of them because like daddy, I too have a dream that you’ll take to music and be an amazing worship leader one day.
I love the look of pride on your face when I praise you for doing a good job or learning a new skill, or helping me to carry something heavy. You are so big and strong. A real life gentleman. I’ll always remember the way you helped Emi carry her water bucket onto the beach when we took our cottage vacation together this summer in Huntsville. Chivalry and nobility at its finest.
You take such delight in helping me and you can pronounce the word “help” so well!!! I’m SO proud of you. And that sweet sheepish little grin of your’s kills me every time. You could get me to do anything with that look. It’s a good thing you don’t know that yet.
And P.S. this “mommy brain” thing is real! I cannot for the life of me write one single blog entry without any grammatical errors that I then have to edit over and over. It’s because you get the best of me babe, and the rest, meh, the rest is all that’s leftover.
So you see, there is so much I want to record and keep track of little man….. like how whenever we go on the monkey bars at the “small park” by our house (that’s how you distinguish it from the “big park” by Buni Nona’s house), you start to sing the “no more monkeys jumping on the bed” song. Needless to say that one of your favourite pass-times is jumping on MY bed.
Every story reminds me of another story, another memory, something else I want to savour about our special time together, you and me bub. But we’re busy living our life with one another and don’t have time to chronicle every detail; hopefully enough to give you a sense of how special and amazing this season is for me, no matter how hard on some of the crankier days (more often mine than yours).
I want you to look back and KNOW that you are so loved and wanted and ENJOYED! That’s right, we enjoy you! Watching you sleep, and eat and discovering and running, and jumping and learning how to use your legs and that awesome throwing arm.