February 8, 2009

Dear Jack, Month 20

Dear Jack,

I find myself thinking about your high school graduation party quite a bit. Weird, I know. But I wonder where we'll be living and what your plans will be. I wonder what you'll look like and what interests you'll have.

I think my mind wanders to these things because ultimately, I wonder how the things we're teaching you now will affect you when you're 18. Or when you're 12. Or 30.

This month has been full of . . . um, let's call them "teachable moments. " You call them "mime outs." We've had plenty of opportunities to teach you the difference between right and wrong and to show you which things are acceptable and unacceptable. It's a part of my job to demonstrate and enforce appropriate boundaries and behavior. I know that you don't always appreciate it. And I suspect that even looking back someday, you still might not completely get it. But while we don't always know what we're doing and a lot of what we do is trial and error, I hope you'll always know that everything we do is with your best interest in mind.

Your dad and I love how quickly your language is developing . . . most of the time. You've become very demanding, and quite specific in those demands. You want water WITH ICE IN A RED CUP. You want to wear socks, but ONLY YOUR FOOTBALL SOCKS. You want your cheerios IN A BOWL WITH MILK AND A SPOON. You want to read a book IN MOMMY AND DADDY'S ROOM WITH COVERS. The number of demands you make increases proportionally according to how tired you are. I've wondered if this is the beginning of OCD tendencies, and that we'll someday look back on all of this and think, "That was just the beginning." But I'm pretty sure it's just toddlerhood.

On the flip side, this little burst of verbosity means that we can carry on mini-conversations with you now. You tell me what you like and dislike. You can tell me what makes you happy or sad. You re-cap for us what you had for any meal that we don't eat with you. We ask you questions and you answer, and sometimes call yourself "silly" before we even get the chance. You ask us questions, too . . . and I'm trying to enjoy this brief time in your life where I'll always have an answer for you. I know that there will be a day that you ask questions that leave me stumped. Or unsure of how to answer.

Part of the reason that this letter is late is because of the stomach flu that all three of us have had this week. While I hated the fact that you were sick, and would have done anything to make you better, I savored every minute of being able to cuddle with you and comfort you. Every time you got sick, you'd come lay back down in bed with me and look for a spot against me to get comfortable. I would stroke your hair or rub your back and think about how lucky I am to be your mom.

I thank God every day for you.


1 comment:

Xander said...

All my friends have wondered if their 2-year-olds have OCD in the last 6 mos. I'm in that group now.

Oh, and I love reading books "in mommy and daddy's bed with covers." Its become a great tradition here. :)