Friday, February 29, 2008

Walk Like a Man

Friday morning, 6:15am. I hear a small hand knocking at the door. Snug in my bed but not yet asleep after an early morning feeding, I don't immediately register the sound. Once I do, I think it must be coming from the residents next door (they keep early hours and other people's kids). I close my eyes again. Next I hear a small voice calling my name:

"Mamma? ...Mamma? ...Mamma!"

I sigh and throw off the covers, sleep denied. I open the bedroom door. No one is there. The knocking starts again. It's coming from inside the Boy's room. I open the door. The Boy is standing just inside. I turn on the light.

"I had a wonderful sleep!" the Boy volunteers.

"Did you now?" I sigh again, required to start my day long before my wishes.

So much has happened in the last four months. We've come so far without really going anywhere that I forget, sometimes, that it has been a relatively short time since we've become a family of four. I forget, too, that while it has been a big adjustment for us all, the biggest strides have had to be made by the Boy. He was aware of the changes to come but completely unprepared for what they entailed. He has been, for many months now, very excited that he is a Big Boy. But it wasn't until the baby arrived that he really had to prove it. Test his mettle.

All at once, he's being asked to use the potty, learn to dress himself, stop sucking his thumb, walk instead of be carried, help with the baby, and on and on and on till I'm surprised that he doesn't retreat into his pre-brother world and hide away, a little fly stuck in amber. There he would be showcased in crystalline perfection, with no room for salty tears and banging fists. No one would see his disappointment when no pee comes out. Or hear his quiet query in the stroller: "Can I suck my thumb?" Or see him trip on a completely level floor.

What would they see? A Boy who has a sunny disposition and a heart of gold. A Boy who is envelopped in a four kid bear-hug before he can get his coat off at daycare. A Boy whose perceived faults only make him more perfect. If love were enough, he would know that he can only be wonderful in our eyes. He would know that exasperation and nagging, and yes, even involuntarily harsh words are simply a result of the circumstances, and no reflection on how we feel about him.

Because there is plenty of time to grow up. And if he can't figure out how to open his bedroom door, that only means we will get to love him that much closer, that much longer.


16 comments:

bren j. said...

I'm glad your little guy had such a great sleep. Maybe he can share the secret!

motherbumper said...

Oh what a beautiful post. B is getting to be such a big girl that it takes something like a doorknob to make me feel that babyhood will last just a bit longer (to my delight).

ewe are here said...

Awwwww. LOvely post.

We do have to stop and remind ourselves, specifically remind ourselves, that it's not easy being the Big Boy all the time. Because our Big Boy isn't really all that big...

Beck said...

Lovely post.
Our house is so old that The Baby can open any door she wants merely by furiously kicking it. Sigh.

Gabriella said...

It truly is a wonder to see what our little ones are capable of. Loved this post.

Tracey said...

What a lovely letter to your first baby...

painted maypole said...

so sweet. you write with such beauty about your love for your handsome big boy.

the dragonfly said...

What a sweet boy you have. :)

(and I'd like to have a good sleep myself!)

farmwifetwo said...

I have a very claustrophobic 8yr old, no closed bedroom doors ever.

They do grow up to fast... Blog hopping from elswhere that I hopped into and found this one... was in TO only a few days ago. Hope you didn't get all this snow yesterday.

S.

Kyla said...

KayTar wakes up each morning and says "I had a good sleeper!" LOL.

It is tough being the older one, I imagine...but the older has years the youngest will never know, years with total attention of both parents, so I like to think it somehow balances out.

He's such a good boy, isn't he?

crazymumma said...

nothing in the world like a good sleep.

He is beautiful.

Bon said...

oh, sniff. he is so sweet.

kittenpie said...

I worry about this, too. In fact, I worry abotu it already, with my temper being short these days and seeing her clingier and more manipulative behaviour possibly being a result of it. I bet it all works out fine in a little time, but he's doing great not to be regressing, as many kids do. Way to go, Big Boy!

Christine said...

oh.

nomo, i see a lovely little boy who has a wonderful mama.

Running on empty

Mad Hatter said...

He is that perfect combination of Big Boy and wee lad. And, NoMo, I don't know if I've said this b/c you have only recently started showing his picture full-on but he is beautiful. So sweet and strong yet vulnerable.

Mimi said...

What a wonderful post. What a beautiful boy.