Tuesday, November 29, 2011

I Bigger!

The swift cadence of the hurried footsteps coming down the hall was my first tip-off that a little boy was aware of the significance of today. "I BIGGER!!!," he shouted as he made the turn from living room into front hallway just steps from our bedroom door.

In my groggy stupor I smiled at the innocent belief on his part that he had, indeed, grown at least a foot overnight. "Happy Birthday, Jacob!" I whispered as he jumped up on the bed like a surfer mounting his aquatic steed and exclaimed "I BIGGER, MOMMY! I FOUR!" The jubilant tone of his voice was no match for the mile-wide, now-four-year-old grin on his little face.

As I reveled in his pre-dawn aging celebration, I found it hard to believe it had been four years since that day. A day when a young woman went into labor and when a slightly older woman sat in her home just north of Atlanta and cleaned and cried and worried and paced and cleaned a little more and double checked the closet in the newly-painted upstairs nursery so tightly jammed with newborn clothes that nary a Q-tip would have fit in there...a day when two families would be forever intertwined even though they might never speak or see each other again in this life...a day when a phone call from the adoption agency saying "he's here!" would bring the slightly older woman to her knees with tears of relief and panic and joy and simultaneous sorrow for the young woman facing a wrenching decision. November 29, 2007 indeed was a day of deep emotion and celebration and prayer and thanksgiving all wrapped into one.

Now as she watched his big four year old eyes sparkle and patted the soft chestnut colored hair on his head, she was overcome with a wave of celebration of her own. From the marks on the laundry room wall tracking his amazing growth spurt this year to the incessant questions about life that now spewed forth from his talkative little mouth, this child had blossomed. He was BIGGER! in every sense of the word and she was proud to have played a role in the spunky little fella's development.

The sense of importance about his getting "bigger" was not lost on me, either. As the younger brother to a very smart and rambunctious brother six years his senior, this milestone was a signal he was surely catching up (and ironically, in size, he actually is). But there were two much-greater benefits of this birthday than trying to be like his brother or giving his Momma a reason to reminisce...

"Mommy! Now that I BIGGER I can wear those shoes that are lighting up in there can't I Mommy? And can we get cupcakes with the rings in them for my friends, Mommy? Since I BIGGER today???"

Yes, sweet boy. Because you're BIGGER.

I love you, Jacob.
Happy 4th Birthday.

Love, Mommy

Friday, November 18, 2011

How Do You Make Brown and Other Burning Life Questions

My 3 year old son had been alone in the bathroom with me for a grand total of 2 minutes when the bombardment began:
  • What is this? (opens my bottom cabinet, pulls a tampon out and holds it vertically with an ever so inquisitive expression)
  • Why do you put this in your eyes (picks up bottle of contact solution)
  • Why do you put on the make-ups?
  • When are we going to da movie feeter?
  • Did you know Skyler's Mommy died and went to Heaven?
  • Where is Heaven, Mommy?
  • How do you make the color brown?
My head, still reeling from a week long headache, could not comprehend the magnitude of what must run through my child's brain on an ongoing basis. His big blue eyes implore me to answer each and every question to his satisfaction. But sometimes I just don't have the answers.

Like how in the heck do you make brown anyway?

But what I am most thankful for is the fact that he digs. He plunders. He wonders and asks questions and wants to know every detail about everything in his path: what it is, why it is there, how does it work and will he have one "when he is the parent?"

And even on nights when my brain thinks it cannot soak in even one more question...I am grateful for every inquisitive bone in that child's body.

Keep the questions coming my child. Well, all except the tampon ones. I need a few more years to formulate an answer for that one.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

2:34 am.

The darkness envelopes me as I step out onto the deck. A strong breeze whips through the bare branches and the bushes give off a "sizzling" sound in its wake. The wood is damp beneath my feet as I tiptoe about searching for just the right spot. Arms crossed to huddle against the wind, I reach my destination in the back right corner...

...and I breathe.

The wind picks up and the moist air reminds me of the beach. I close my eyes and suddenly I am standing on a balcony as the surf rolls in. The stray crickets I hear become seagulls and the breeze is now whipping off the water instead of the rose bushes below me. My skin is no longer chilly but instead soothed by the cool touch after what must have been a lazy day of lounging in the sun.

I am there. And yes, it's 2:34am but I am at the beach so it doesn't matter. No school bus to race for, no meetings, no responsibilities. Ahhhhhh.

But reality soon hits and I return to my own bed where sleep eludes me.

At least there won't be sand in it, though.

There's always an upside. ;)