Eight months ago, I started writing this post…then in whirlwind of life, I forgot about it. I never finished. At first I thought about deleting it all, then I realized “Oh my god. I forgot about the whole incident!” Read on…
Two days ago, my son pulled himself up to standing. He’d been attempting for a small while, and because I’m wanting be able to relive every amazing moment of his life in 20 years, I had my camera ready.
We have one of those half infant half toddler tubs from Target. It’s been his only tub, and because we’ve stood him up every single night in the tub since birth to wash that tiny little butt, it’s not surprising this was where he attempted, and accomplished, his newfound talent. If you’ve ever seen these tubs you know that the infant side is sloped like a spa tub so he could lay back and just splash. As he grew and could sit unassisted, we flipped it around to the toddler side…where he could splash. He gathered a few weeks ago that where the head goes on the infant side could be used as a handle and has been pulling himself up and over to flatten his tummy on the slope to generally reach around for things at a new angle. Recently, with the help of mom and dad, he’s been standing much faster from a laying or sitting position while on the floor.
So this night, we saw his little brain working, while he was wiggling and reaching and splashing. Jeremy sat on the floor to catch, I worked the camera. He leaned forward, grabbed ahold of the infant side and very slowly straightened his legs. He concentrated so hard, wobbled a bit and fell backwards. Then he did it again. And again. And again. Each time he got sturdier, and thus more confident. Each time Jeremy and I held our breath so we wouldn’t break his concentration. Each time, I got closer and closer to sobbing.
Finally, he did it. He stood up, stayed sturdy (as much as you can having never really used your legs before now) straightened his torso and walked his hands up the seat in the shower…and promptly grabbed for the shampoo.
I have never been SO proud in my life! Then I realized: except when he rolled over the first time, or sat up without assistance, or we felt teeth buds, or when he ate solid foods, or when I lost him in the living room because he’d rolled from one side to the other, or when he nursed for the very first time.
My kid is amazing. I know, moms…right? But seriously. Amazing! Maybe not because he’s developing wonderfully or because he’s so chill or because I still feel I don’t deserve this tiny miracle, but I think he’s amazing because he simply is. When exactly do we become so tarnished and beaten that we think one decent effort is “good enough”? I keep replaying how many times, and for how many weeks, did he try standing? What if I tried something that hard?! What could I do? Talk amount blowing your mind…
Amazing right? How on EARTH could I forget about it?! The answer was right there, like an annoying fly that won’t get the clue when you swat at it, because LIFE has happened.
Since then, he’s learned to walk, to feed himself, to drink from a cup, use a fork and climb the stairs. He’s learned where his eyes, ears, mouth, nose, tummy and toes are. He’s learned how to make animal sounds, and find his socks and shoes. He’s learned how to sign for mom, dad, eat, drink, show, bye-bye, please, all-done, milk, play, more and bath. He learned to climb on the couch and that he can see daddy through the window when he’s home from work. He knows the iPad is how you talk to grandma and grandpa, that DayCare means other kids to play with, and when someone is cooking that the kitchen is dangerous.
He’s massive now (compared to that tiny ten pound bundle we brought home), he’s sooooooooo smart, and he’s growing so fast. Everyone said he would, but when you stop for a moment to really think about it, it is alarming. Eight months ago he learned to stand, now he runs and climbs. EIGHT. That’s less than a full-term pregnancy, a school year, only two and a half seasons.
As parents we’re so exhausted and overwhelmed all the time that though we celebrate when an accomplishment is made, by the next day it’s old hat. One days he can’t, the next day he can. Simple as that.
But it’s not. I feel like Moira from “Hook” with Robin Williams is standing there saying:
“Your children love you, they want to play with you. How long do you think that lasts? Soon Jack may not even want you to come to his games. We have a few special years with our children, when they’re the ones that want us around. After that you’re going to be running after them for a bit of attention. It’s so fast Peter. It’s a few years, and it’s over. And you are not being careful. And you are missing it.“
BAM! Right in the feelers. I work at home, go to school virtually, raise Little Man and pretend to be a house wife (though the last gets neglected more often than not). So many days I’ve just wanted him to keep sleeping, to zone out on the TV, to play without calling out for me just to get a break. Then he did. It was a relief…and yet heartbreaking. He was fine without me.
He’s growing up so fast. I’m very blessed to be home with him, I know that…and even with the emotions, the fatigue, the dirty house, and feeling overwhelmed I thank god every day I’m not missing it.