Sunday, April 17, 2011

smallish boy; still growing

    it's happening. my boy is growing up. he was once small and on my hip always. now he runs and jumps everywhere, talks about every single thing that pops into his mind and makes every single sound that you could possibly think about making. even the sounds you'd never think about making.
   when i worked in a day care center i refused to work in the pre k room. "why?" my boss would ask. "because those kids talk back and the boys are totally unrelateable. i have no idea what to do with them or how to go about controlling them." i should have worked in the pre K room.
 one morning i was trying to get my kids ready to "go out" simply because we could. we don't always have a car but today i made sure we did. i was quickly getting discouraged by the amount of time it was taking just to get out the door. realizing we didn't even have a specific destination, i asked my son, "where in the world are we getting ready to go to any way?" i was walking him into his room to help him find his shoes for the fifth time. 
 "mommy?" he asked tapping my leg and arching his neck up hard to see me. he put his hands up and motioned me down to him. i bent over signing with exhaustion. 'what in the world could he want me down here for?' was my first thought. 
 putting his smallish hands on either of my checks and looking deep into my eyes he said, "what do you say we go to the mall and i buy you a pillow pet?"
 ...and cue melting heart...he might have known he was in trouble but he did for sure know i was getting frustrated. always the one to try and cheer up another, that is my boy. embracing him in a deep hug i realize it's not about what we do or where it is we go. it's about the time we spend together. at that moment in time, had i all the money in the world, i would have taken him to every mall and bought him every pillow pet.
 this boy, the one i had just yelled at for not putting his shoes on the first time i asked, holding me in the tightest hug possible with his smallish arms, was teaching me. his arms once so small. while they have far to grow to be "daddy sized" they are suddenly too big for me to believe they are the same arms that used to hold my neck while he sat on my hip.
   as if he could read my mind he asked, "mommy? can you hold me more? i mean like you hold gwacie?"
 breathing in deeply and blinking back tears i whisper into his smallish ear, "you bet buddy. i will hold you more. a lot more."
    had i worked in the pre k room at the day care center i might have learned that relating to kids isn't always about having something in common with them, but having a desire to be there for them. that while they do talk back sometimes, they just may have something important to say. something nice to say. something encouraging to say that will bring you up when your feeling down. that sometimes they have just the right words when i'm flounder. that controlling them isn't as important as guiding them. 
   my boy. he is getting so big so fast. i am so glad that he still wants me to hold him. i pray their never comes a day when he doesn't want me to hold him. i pray their never comes a day that i forget that he has so much to teach me. about myself. about the world around me. about him. i pray that i make more time to help him find his shoes. that i realize that he might know where they are, but really just wants me to be by his side while he puts them on. that he just may need me to hold him more.

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