23 May, 2011

growing up

kid, you are growing up so fast. i realized the other day that you've been walking on your own for almost a year now. that is just so hard to believe. it seems like yesterday that you were demanding to walk around everywhere while i held onto your hands. it seems like that went on forever. it seems like yesterday when you stood up and held onto the couch all by yourself at your baby blessing celebration.

you were so ready to do things on your own from the beginning. i often wonder if that's what you were so pissed off about. you came out with this frustration that you just couldn't seem to get a hold of. and then when i couldn't get a hold of it either, it just seemed to escalate.

but as time went on, with every new skill you learned, it seemed that a little of the frustration disappeared.

a couple of weeks ago you grabbed my glass full of water and picked it up. i ran over to grab it from you as i imagined it falling and breaking all over your little toes. but before i got there you put it to your mouth, took a nice long drink, and put the glass back on the table. you did it so carefully. without even a dribble coming out of your mouth. i forget sometimes that you are growing up.

we were out the other day at the store. i forget what it was that we even bought, but as i paid i said my usual thank you to the cashier. when we got in the car and you saw whatever it was, you said "thank you" and did the sign at the same time. you kept doing it every time you saw that thing. we got you a fish. and on your own when we were looking at it together the next morning, you looked at me and said, "thank you" all by yourself. it wasn't the words that got me, it aws the look in your eyes. it was like you were thanking me for more than just the fish. it was the coolest thing i ever saw. well, that morning, anyway.

you have been saying thank you for so months now. i am always so amazed by it because i have never told you to say thank you. you just say it because you are soaking everything up that you see. you learn every day all the time without any effort on either of our parts. i never even taught you the sign for thank you. maren does it with jaren and you have seen her do it. you copy everyone around you.

last week you came up to me and said' "off". and when my face asked you "what off?" you pointed to your diaper and said "off. poop." i nearly pooped my own pants with surprise. for months you have been telling me when you pee -- since i leave your diaper off so often at home you are often telling me you have peed on the floor -- but i just figured that was because your diaper was off and it was easy for you to recognize it. but here you are, getting to be a big boy, telling me that you pooped. it's only been a week or so but i can't believe how much easier it is for both of us. i don't have to annoy you by asking you and checking your butt. you just tell me. i can only imagine how good that makes you feel to understand what is happening in our body and to be able to tell me about it. and also i guess to know that it's normal.

these days when you are tired you tell me, "up" and point towards our bed. if you want to nurse you say "milky" and show me where i should sit. you can tell me if you want a snack and point to the exact thing you want. if you fall and get hurt you can show me where it hurts and what did it to you. you make up your own signs for words you can't say. you have always been a communicator, from the moment you were pulled form my belly, but it makes it so much easier and so much more fun now that you can communicate with your words and with clear body language.

it must be so hard to be a baby. even with a mom who responds within seconds to your cries or requests, there have obviously been so many times when i couldn't understand what it was you needed, or now as you are getting older, what you wanted. when you were a tiny baby and you couldn't speak, or walk, or even sit up by yourself, you must have felt so much frustration with your world and even with the people who love you.

it was really hard for you to be a baby. and it was really hard for me when you were a baby. but now you are growing up becoming a big boy. we have figured each other out. and together we're trying to figure out the world. and it won't be long before you are eight. and then nine like your cousins. it happens so fast. it seems like just yesterday that they were running around learning about being "civilized" just like you are now. and now they are big and are sometimes just too cool to hang with your goofy mom. and that will be you someday. someday too soon.

so for now, i am going to spend every minute i can watching with wonder as you are growing up right in front of me.

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