My son turned eight this past week, and just like that, in a blink of an eye, he has gone from being a little boy clutching a stuffed Curious George to a kid who runs from playing baseball to his Xbox to reading chapter books to making typical (but nonetheless disgusting) fart jokes with his nine-year old brother. How (and when) in the world did all of this happen? Don't get me wrong--it's absolutely amazing to watch him grow and develop into this wonderfully little person who is generous and sensitive (fart jokes not withstanding) and who is loaded with personality and humor, but there are moments where I have to remind myself that this is what is supposed to happen: that he is supposed to become more independent, more grown up, and more able to do things on his own.
Sigh. The lament of all moms as they watch their little ones become less little and more grown up. As it should be, but still, a bit of a tug on the old heartstrings.
I vividly remember one of those bleary-eyed middle-of-the-night feedings where I could barely put one foot in front of the other, when Morgan was probably around six months old. I stumbled to his bedroom, got him from his crib, warm and crying and soothed the moment I picked him up. (Would have been nice for Mom to have the same service, but I digress, LOL...)
I changed him, warmed his bottle and settled into the over-stuffed yellow rocker that still sits in his room today. In those days (thank you, infant reflux) it would take him a good 30 minutes--maybe more, to drink an ounce or two. Sometimes he would fall asleep mid-feeding, other times, I would just sit in the chair with him for an hour or more until we both woke up again and we'd start all over.
I remember that on that night he took the entire bottle (miracle one), burped easily (number two) and then I wrapped him under this tiny velour blanket and held him against me. I told myself, literally told myself to breathe him in, remember how he smelled and how this moment felt so that years later, I could call up the memory of it. I clearly remember saying to myself "remember this moment" as if it were yesterday. And now, I can absolutely remember that moment frame by perfect frame.
Just last week when Morgan below out the candles on his eight birthday cake, for some reason, that scene came to my mind. I thought about that yellow rocker, now piled high with games and stuffed animals, and the weight of him and how he smelled and felt that night. I can even feel the warmth of that little blanket, which still sits on that same chair today.
With a little luck, as I get older, I'll remember these things and not the fart jokes. Did I mention the new obsession with the word booty?
Don't get me started. Welcome to age eight.
Until next time,