And Then You Were Four.March 16, 2012 at 8:52 am | Posted in Birthdays (Years in Review) | 11 Comments
My amazing, wonderful, gorgeous son:
Tomorrow morning, when you wake up, you will be four years old. And you’ll probably come running into our bedroom with all the stuffed animals you sleep with piled in your arms, and announce that your clock is green. Like you do every weekend when your Daddy and I decide to sleep in. Then you’ll dump Crying Bear, Happy Bear, Mommy Bear, Maisy, Spoochy, Thomas the turtle, and your polka dot baby blanket on the floor and climb into bed with us.
I have spent the better part of this week marveling at how quickly the time has gone. Looking at you now, it’s hard to remember the parts of the baby you were. You’re such a little BOY.
You are obsessed with space right now. Every time you get to pick a DVD from the library, you pick out “Popular Mechanics for Kids,” which makes me laugh because, really? No muppets, cartoons, Disney movies? Popular MECHANICS? Clearly there’s a nerd gene which you inherited from your father. I LOVE it. You love the Space Shuttles episode, and with nearly every action you do, I hear you counting down. “5, 4, 3, 2, 1… and we have LIFTOFF!”
I thought maybe the winter would cure you of your baseball obsession, but it’s still going strong. This week, whenever we’ve gotten home from daycare, since it’s still light out, you insist we have to play baseball. You ask me if I need to use the potty (I usually do!), and tell me you are going to get the baseball game ready while I go inside. And then we play. You make me be the pitcher AND the announcer. I have to say, every time… And the batter steps up to the plate. He looks REALLY mad! while you make your best angry face at me.
And then I say, … and here’s the pitch…
And a couple of days ago? You hit the ball so hard that it went all the way down the driveway and onto the street. Seriously, kiddo, you’ve got some amazing hand-eye coordination.
You’ve completely given up napping at school and at home, which is a bit of a relief because now we have some regularity to our evenings. Even when you DO nap at school, you really do TRY and go to sleep at night; you stay in your bed and lay there calmly, until you realize that you need something more. And the other night, you actually asked me for milk. Mommy,you said. Can I have some milk to help me fall asleep? And warm it up, a little? We’ve actually been able to give you a sippy of milk and leave your room and know that you’ll put yourself to sleep.
On the days you don’t nap, you have a pretty hard stopping point – and you’re AWARE of it. The other night, at 7:30, you told me that Cousin D needed to go home, because it was almost bedtime.
After so many sleepless nights when you were a baby, this is a relief to your Daddy and I. You know that sleep is important and you are listening to your body well enough that you know when you need to sleep.
Our next challenge, I think, is eating. You love cheese and pasta, and that’s pretty much what all you ever you want to eat. You’ll sometimes try a new food, if you’re REALLY hungry, but more often than not you get mad at us that pasta isn’t on the menu. You tell us all the time that you don’t like spicy food, and I think you mean that you have a hard time with food with too many spices – you get overstimulated, or something. Your Daddy and I have been adding some spices into your pasta – garlic, olive oil, basil – and you seem to do just fine with them. Slow and steady wins the race; we just need to realize that most nights you won’t eat everything we give you; you’ll first eat the stuff you like. Or we have to bribe you with something you like (i.e. after-dinner treat) to get you to eat what’s on your plate.
We’re working on that.
Playtime, for you, is all the time. You like packaging up your toys into boxes and giving your Daddy and I “presents,” usually your Bear or dolphin with a monster truck or doctor’s kit toy in there. You’ll take it back and “wrap it up” for someone else, usually Daddy.
Your best friends are Cousin D and the Three Musketeers at your school.
You are a consumate builder; every time I get to school to pick you up, you’re using the magnatiles and building garages for the cars there. Or building your “best toy” with legos. You ALWAYS tell your teacher before you leave to keep your special toy safe so that you can play with it tomorrow.
And man, how I miss the days where you’d run up to me, yelling Mommy!!!! when I got to daycare. Now you’re more likely to tell me, Excuse me, Mommy, I’m busy right now.
Which, by the way, you say all the time now. Excuse me? Um… no matter what it is. It makes me smile EVERY TIME I hear you say it. And I want to give you a huge hug and kiss you all over.
I’m surprised by how much cuddling time you still want from me. You’re busy, so much, but whenever it comes time to get dressed, even though you can (and have!) gotten dressed and undressed by yourself, you still come over and ask me for help in the mornings. You sit on my lap and I can kiss the top of your head for a luxurious 2 minutes while I help you change. And often, if you’re really pushing boundaries and being contrary and angry, it’s a signal to me that you need some love and physical attention – hugs, kisses, cuddling. You get more defiant when you are embarrassed or feeling needy, and really just a few minutes of cuddling helps us BOTH tremendously.
And then you’re off, talking up a storm, pretending, making up stories and playing with your stuffed animals and making more presents for me.
I can’t imagine life without you, kiddo. And it’s not every day anymore, but whenever I think about how long the journey was for us to bring you home, I thank the universe for you. We are so very lucky to have you in our lives, and I love you with a power that’s bigger and wider than anything I’ve ever known.
So happy birthday, my gorgeous Lucky. I love you.