Sunday, January 9, 2011
If you are the kind of person who is repulsed by shameless bragging, turn away now. Guide your mouse up to that x in the top, right-hand corner of your browser and click. Or maybe meander your way on over to You Tube and watch a cat jump out of a paper bag. Or go watch snow fall. But do not stay here. Because this will not be the post for you.

I'll start with E, not because I love him more (I don't) but because he was born first.

E is in a lovey phase of his little life. He often, albeit randomly, declares his love for me, for his dad and for B. But as much as I'd like to think I'm the love of his life, the other day I was buckling him into his car seat and he was all day-dreamy. He blinked repeatedly and then looked right at me. "I love Miss S*." I just smiled at him and reassured him that Miss S adored him too. "She was the birthday girl," he sighed, his voice full of awe and devotion.

We were at Storytime at a new library last week and unlike the Storytime we're used to, the librarian at Bemis lined up about 25 sweet little angels, led them into the Cloud Room and shut the door...leaving a room full of moms kid-free. It all happened so quickly. I took B back into the corner of the main children's library room where there is a castle built into the wall and we played for about five minutes before E came running out of the kid-sized door, his eyes scanning the room. He spotted us over the lower front bookshelves and came running back "just to say hi." And without any prompting from me, he returned to the Cloud Room and we didn't see him again till 25 minutes later when all the kids came pouring out of the room, buzzing with excitement about the dragons and knights from the puppet show. I was so proud of E. This time last year, he would have melted into a tearful puddle and refused to go into that room without me, but he's grown up so much in just the last few months. And to tell you the truth, I was a little bit proud of D and myself. We've tried to stay true to E and his needs, ignoring conventional wisdom or the pressure we sometimes get from other parents. E has made it clear since he was a wee little baby that he would not do anything a day before he was ready to, and we've honored that. We have respected his own personal timeline and I felt so validated, standing in that library with my brave little boy running off to join a room full of kids he didn't know in a place he was unfamiliar with.

E has been going through a verbal explosion. Using words like "perception" and "distracted" in conversation. And his phonemic awareness is also blowing up. "Books starts with B! Hu, hu, hungry starts with H!" He's been working on writing his letters and I've been working on reminding him that you're not born knowing how to write and that just because you can't draw a perfect letter 'a' on your very first try ever doesn't mean you never will. The kid is a perfectionist and it worries me how quickly he gets frustrated with himself.

He's also been a lot more...I don't know. Mature? I asked him recently if he thought he was ready to go to school (again, we've been following his lead on this one) and instead of the automatic "no" I've grown used to hearing, E paused and said, "Why do you ask?" I'm going to stop to remind you that E is a little over three years old. "Why do you ask?" Seriously? Anyway, I told him that if he thought he was ready, then we could start looking at schools to see if there was one he liked. "Sure." And since we were down by the Montessori school I had on my list of potential schools, I offered to drive by it. So we did. "I love it!" he said, staring up at the front doors. I scheduled a tour for the next day and we all four fell in love with it. We bought a $50 ticket for the enrollment lottery and we have our fingers crossed that we get in. We're still interviewing other schools but we really, really loved MPA.

Now onto the munchkin...BP no longer really fits, especially now that I know that "pterodactyl" is a misnomer. I'd call her my midget but I only have like five loyal readers and since I'm not sure how tall four of them are, I'd hate to offend. I often call her mon petite, but I'd also hate for someone to think I'm French**.

B has also been busy acquiring language. She points to one of her favorite snacks, plantain chips, and says "pits, pits, pits." She also says "pat" as in let me lay my head on you and pat your face, "bas" as in I hope you have enough soap and water in that tub to get the play-doh out of my hair, the yogurt out from under the folds of my chin, the pen marks off of my cheek and the bbq rib sauce from in between my fat little fingers, and "pees" for please give me whatever it is I want right now or I will scream! She also says "bot" for bottle, "poop" when she has a poop, when she wants to sit on the toilet and poop, when someone else has pooped, or when she sees a poop. She also says "pee" as in I thought I had a "poop" but really it was just a pee.

She still has anxiety separation, which apparently is normal at this age (15 months) but the thing with her is that she was born with it and it has never gone away. In fact, she not only has separation anxiety, she's also a jealous little bugger. When D comes home, he always walks in and gives me a kiss hello and if B is in my arms, she screeches at him and waves an arm back and forth, as if she could sweep him away. If she's anywhere else, she starts screaming, drops whatever she's doing and comes waddling over so that I can pick her up.

My most favorite thing B does, however, is when she grabs a book and walks over to you. If you're sitting on the floor, she stops a few feet away from you, turns around, and starts backing up to sit in your lap. It's the cutest thing ever. If you're sitting up somewhere, she literally scales your pant leg and claws her way up into your lap, all the while smiling and saying, "books books books." She sometimes even hugs her books.

And the best part of my day? The thing I love most about being a mom these days? When my two little monsters sit across from each other at the dinner table and do things to make each other laugh. Or when they play downstairs in the kitchen and take turns pretend drinking from each others cup. Or when E gets hurt and cries and B fake-cries along with him in a gesture of solidarity and then lays her head on him and pat pat pats him. Or when E hops out of bed and runs into B's room to give her one of his "softies" so that she can have an extra blanket in her crib. The love that constantly flows from one to the other fills me with an emotion so overwhelming, so all-consuming that I sometimes can't keep my eyes from welling up with tears.

*Remember how the 'S' stand for smart? Yeah. Miss S is not smart. She's super duper freaking brilliant. The girl kicked the CogAT's ass. And not just kind of kicked it's ass. She scored a 93% overall. Woo hoo, Miss S!

**I'm totally kidding. I spent a week in France and loved the country and it's inhabitants. Really. Viva la France and all that.

6 comments to :

Michelle said...

Thanks for trying not to offend me. :-) Haven't you seen the new shirts out, "I'm not short, I'm fun-sized?" We, "petites," have a sense of humor...we have to to put up with you long-legged beauties.

BTW-- You do have some pretty amazing kids! :-)

hush said...

I'm 5'8", so poking fun at the vertically challenged won't offend me. This was one sweet post. I actually love when proud parents brag about their children via the internet, although (obviously) the exact same behavior is a big turnoff IRL - interesting to ponder that difference. Anyway, if you can't sing your kids' praises on the Internet, where the hell can you?

Cloud said...

Your kids are awesome!

It sounds like your 15 month old is ahead of mine as far as talking goes... Petunia has a few signs and a few words, which pretty much universally lack their final sound. But she's starting to communicate, so I'm happy!

mom2boy said...

I'm in denial that I'm not "regular" size, so I wouldn't know to be offended by a midget comment. :)

"why do you ask" is pretty great. I'd brag on that, too. And a pint sized lover of books, books, books, also pretty great.

The emotion from seeing the two of them interact and love each other - I can imagine how powerful that is. If you believe/think of love as energy, watching it flow from you to them, to between them, it doesn't get any better than that.

Anonymous said...

brag away! it's awesome to hear about such sweet adorable kids. I love that "Why do you ask?" was he kidnapped briefly by some Brits??

I hope you get the Montessori school. I looooved Montessori! and here I am in the land of Maria M. and there are none in my area... hrmph. She used to be on the 1000 lira bill then they got rid of that... I smell a conspiracy...

caramama said...

Awww, I love these posts! Brag some more! Your kids are awesome!

My boy was doing that back-into-the-lap thing, too. It's super cute.

And as a 5'2" munchkin, I'm so used to the shortie comments that I don't mind. My dad thinks it's funny to call me Half Pint, partly because I look a lot like Laura from Little House (Melissa Gilbert). My mom calls me Shortcake. When you are short like me, you just have to own it. ;-)

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