Friday, July 9, 2010

My Baby is Growing Up

My youngest turned 8 today. Eight. That's 10 years shy of 18, when he'll leave the nest. 10 years until my job as "Mom" is done. (Although of course you never stop being mom, do you? But the day to day, molding-young-minds part will be done.) 10 years is the blink of an eye, as I know since my oldest turned 17 less than two weeks ago.

Today is the day to be a little nostalgic and remember him as a baby. He was born at home, which shocked a lot of people, but it was the best decision we could have made and absolutely the right choice for our family at that time. His birthday is very close to The Eldest's; I wondered if they might share a birthday when I was pregnant with him. It turned out that he was a few days late while The Eldest had been a few days early, so their birthdays are spread out across June and July. Had they both been born on time... they both could have been born on July 2nd. Or the 4th. He was late enough that they were starting to talk about inducing, but it didn't come to that. (Whew!) He just needed a little more cooking, I suppose. He was an easy baby, too; he didn't have any trouble nursing (which was not the case with the girls) and he slept a lot. No colic, which The Eldest suffered with.

Then he started walking. At eight months. All downhill from there. No, no, no, I'm only kidding. It wasn't a downhill thing, it was more like a roller coaster. He was a mile a minute as a toddler and pre-schooler. Like The Eldest, we couldn't take him anywhere without knowing how we were going to contain him once we got there. I am unapologetic about using a harness with him when we went into crowded situations; it was for his safety since he was a runner. He would take off and not look back, just trusting us to follow him. I did follow him a few times, to see how far he would go. I always gave up before he did and hauled him back to wherever he was supposed to be. The literature says babies will keep checking when they wander and won't go too far away from their caregivers; HA!!! That's rich. The people who wrote that never spent time around my kids, that's for sure. I like to think of it as a trust issue, though; they knew we would keep them safe and not let them get lost so they felt comfortable running as far and as fast as they wanted. Given my fibromyalgia, though, it sure was tough to keep up with him.

There is one time he scared the bejeezus out of me with the running, though. We were at a pre school that offered a lot of parent/child classes. After our class one day I was talking to another mom in one of the play rooms while the kids played. The Youngest, aka The Wild Child, decided he didn't want to play in the playroom anymore and he took off. I think he was around three at the time, but he was still fast. He ran out of the playroom, down the hall, down the stairs, through the lobby, and out the front doors of the building with me chasing behind him yelling "stop, stop" all the way. (You'd think one of the other parents would have grabbed him for me; nope, they just watched him run right by.) The front doors open onto a parking lot!!!! Luckily he turned and headed down the sidewalk instead of into the parking area and I was finally able to catch him. I asked him why, WHY!?! He said he didn't like me talking to the other moms.


OK, maybe growing up won't be so bad in his case.

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