eighteen months

To my 18 month old son…

I have now had to share you with the outside world for twice as long as I had you to myself. It is much harder than I thought. Each day, I patiently wait for the evening, when I can whisk you away from everyone and everything else, and it is just the two of us, snuggling together in our chair. You used to nestle into my neck, a warm little ball of mush, and I could hold you to me with one hand. You are now a wriggling ball of energy bouncing around, sliding off the chair to get your favorite book, Llama Llama Red Pajama – or as you say, “mama”. Not that you even call me “mama”, just the book. Hmph. When I finally get you on my lap, you are splayed out across my legs, chest, and the sides of the chair. I am happy to have you fall asleep in my arms – completely disregarding the books & rules & advice of all sleep training, but following the contentedness of my heart. Sometimes you do, and after I have refueled my snuggle tank, I hoist us both up out of the chair (you are heavy!) and try to sneak you down the hall without waking up… other times, you point to the door, and we walk to your crib hand in hand, and I will myself to let you grow up a little bit at a time, and let go of me a little bit at a time. But just so you know, I don’t want to.

You are hysterical, with a raucous laugh. Your laugh peppers the air like an automatic weapon, spraying the room with happiness and joy. Running is only done at full speed – I will always picture you running towards me, body forward, mouth in a wide open smile, yelling, with your arms spread out behind you, like the wings of a plane, collapsing when you crash into me, and my arms catch you. When I let you go, you run back to where you started, then take a few steps backward, with a twinkle in your eye, until you gear up and start heading towards me again… and again… and again.

You are rough & tumble – riding your big wheel off the curb, between garbage cans, and over the yellow bumps on the sidewalk. Falling doesn’t seem to phase you at all. I guess that’s good, but I sure do hope you pick up a smidgen of fear sometime soon. Not that I worry too much – I realized that I am already used to your style when we were at a party, and everyone was gasping and running towards you every time you took a tumble. You were pushing a toy lawn mower and ran right off the edge of the patio, and fell down two stairs… everyone went silent, and people stood up out of their chairs… you just popped up with a big grin on your face and laughed, promptly followed by swinging the lawn mower back onto the patio, and you were off and running again. Your father and I rolled our eyes and hoped it didn’t turn into performance art.

Constantly saying… uh-oh
Just learned how to… knock
Want to be… outside
Endlessly flopping on… the dog
Hungry??? ALWAYS!

I waited for 18 months to see the magical plus sign on the test announcing your arrival, and now you have been here for just as long... it was worth the wait.