Over the last few days, I’ve been struck by how sweet, gentle, and caring S can be. Sure, he has his moments of acting like a little hellion, but beneath that, he’s amazingly generous and sensitive. I don’t think all of his classmates in preschool are like this. I know some are – and I’ve observed that those are the kids he seeks out as companions. His two best chums – a girl and a boy – are lively, intelligent, delightful kids. Each has a terrific sense of humor. It makes me particularly sad and wistful to think of moving when I consider the relationships he’s developed with those two kids.
This morning, A overslept (and needed it) and didn’t wake until the bus had already passed, so I took her to school. S is like me in the mornings: he’d love to snuggle in a warm bed for a while, until he has to get up and do something. I always feel bad getting him up before he’s really ready, because I secretly wish I could stay in bed, too. Unfortunately A’s bus arrives at the rude and ugly time of 6:40 am, so I have to get up at least an hour before that to get her on the bus. Usually she’s wide awake and ready to go (like her father, she’s one of those strange “morning people”), but last night we were late getting home. Anyway.
My sympathy for S’s bed-loving ways led me to offer to carry him to the car in his pajamas for the ride to A’s school. Let’s not dwell on the fact that I was also wearing pajama pants for the trip – a fact no one would have even seen before the switch from daylight savings time two weeks ago. I thought I would scoop him out of bed and take him straight to the car, but no. I walked back, and he had turned on his light so he could find his stuffed animals. He walked out of the den, his arms overflowing with stuffed animals, wearing his Buzz Lightyear pajamas, and announced he was ready. I suggested that he pick one animal to join him (I’d never be able to carry him and his menagerie at once), and maybe a blanket, since he didn’t want to put on shoes. This is how we ended up with a boy, his big red fuzzy blanket, and two kitties snuggled in a booster seat for the trip.
His favorite lovey is a little orange striped cat he calls “Kitty.” Kitty is his baby. He’s started taking more trips around town with us since Hubs left for Texas, and S sleeps with Kitty every night. Kitty helps S on the farm (my boy has an unbelievable number of toy tractors and implements, most from my parents), and sometimes even joins us at the dinner table. Kitty is particularly fond of desserts, but since he can’t actually eat them, he tells S (Kitty is very shy and only talks to S) to enjoy his share.
This morning, Kitty and his new tiny sidekick, Little Kitty (a little black and white stuffed toy that S got from a Happy Meal several months ago), joined us for the expedition. After we dropped off A, S and Kitty sat in the back seat taking care of Little Kitty, who, like S’s little brother, is a baby. Drawing on his observations of me, S reenacts typical baby-care tasks and tells Kitty how to be careful and gentle with a baby. Hence such gems as, “Kitty, he’s just a little guy. You have to be careful” and “Shhh! Little Kitty’s sleeping! We don’t want to wake him up!”
Last night we ate dinner with my parents after I picked A up from ballet. Just before we ate, I let S sit on the sofa and hold baby D in his lap. The huge smile and obvious delight on S’s face as he held his baby brother were so precious. He loves being a big brother, loves the sense of responsibility (to teach baby D all about farming as he gets older), and particularly loves to get smiles and laughter from his baby bro.
Sure, S tries my patience sometimes. He can be a handful, and he’s stubborn and insistent in a way that might be attributed to my family or Hubs’ side, maybe both. But he’s also precious, generous (sharing a piece of his favorite candy with his grandfather, because of course he wants to share candy he loves with the man he loves so much), and loving. He hugs his baby brother with great enthusiasm and excitement, if not always as much care and gentleness as I might want. I don’t know what I did to deserve this amazing kid, but he’s such a delight. It’s all I can do not to scoop him up and hug him and kiss him and tell him he’s fabulous while he dances around the kitchen, singing a happy song, doing a happy dance, because he gets to have Fruit Loops for breakfast. He plays “hide and seek” in the car as we drive to school (yes, I know there’s not really anywhere to hide, particularly when you keep your seat belt on, but he loves it nonetheless). He still climbs in my lap sometimes for a cuddle, even though he’s getting older and so independent. My boy is amazing, and I’m a really lucky mom.