Saturday, January 9, 2010

Jumbled thoughts on a Saturday morning

Steve has his Praxis exam today, so I'm waiting with bated breath to hear how it went. No worries about him passing it, but I know he's been stressed about it and it will great to have the weight lifted off his shoulders. We're celebrating by going to see Avatar on Imax, as he's been wanting to see it in the theater.

Some general notes for myself, in absolutely no order or rhythm:

Simone is a fussy-butt. I suppose that's not good news, but the good news part is that it usually comes with some fun new evolutions in personhood. Growth appears painful, from what I've seen with all three. She follows me around and asks to be held a lot, and then throws her head back and tries to fight being held. The red cheeks and nose-run tell me new teeth are part of it, but also the verbal explosion connects too. And that she is insistent on walking down the stairs upright (agh!), but still needs to hold my finger. I do not envy young children's overwhelming drive for independence, paired with the absolute dependence necessary for this age.

- What I love about Simone and all young children: The complete purity of self. She believes in her needs. I mean that seriously. Her wiring and development dictate things, and she listens. She will hunt down the Ergo (back carrier) and bring it to me when she needs held. If I'm sitting on the floor, she'll attempt to drag me up to a standing position so I can put on the Ergo and hold her. I love this communication. I love hearing who she is and what she needs, even if the particulars of it are super annoying at a given moment (like wanting held when I'm in the middle of something pressing).

At some point, she'll conceptualize limits. As in, Mommy can't hold you all the time or "just a second" will make more sense. Right now, she just knows what her soul is asking.

That bothers a lot of mothers, and I can see that perspective. It can be scary to see a child seeming like they're completely unconcerned with the other persons' experience. It doesn't scare me at age 16 months. If she's still like that at 3, 4 and 5 I'll start to wonder. But right now, it's about her age...not who she is. And seeing my boys move through these fluctuations of selfishness and self-centeredness and coming out so empathic and others-aware? It helps with the fear-cycle, which is liberating. We don't always get those validations as moms, but it's easier parenting child #3 when the first two "experiments" delight me. :)

If I keep tuning into her needs, my hope is that she'll go down the same path...learning how to care for others' needs, based on my modeling. If I ignore her needs right now, I wonder if I'd end up teaching her to ignore others' needs as well?

The philosophy of motherhood.

Having a 5-year-old makes life so fun, and it trickles down to the younger ages as well. I see how quickly it goes, how much those early concerns end up being non-issues. I love that. He's asking for Russian martial arts, tells me he "wants to learn every language in the world," wonders about a class where he can learn special effects for movies. He makes things out of Legos that flabbergast me. Watching him explode and learn and create and BE gives reassurance about the details of younger children stuff. That they will create themselves, no matter what we do. That it's about answering questions, providing resources, being a loving foundation for their creation of self....but the actual details of who they are will just blossom in the right environment.

And Andrew...holy cow, I LOVE THIS KID. He said very seriously: "I think I'm going to call you 'Mom' now and *not* 'Mommy.'" Long pause. "Okay?" And then has followed-through, by answering my requests ("Can you grab your coat?") with a dramatic "Okaaaay, MOM." I assume he heard it somewhere, because it has the inflection of a teen...but delivered in completely non-aggressive innocence. I try hard not to crack up, because he doesn't mean it as a joke.

When he walked into my room the other morning, assuring me: "I'll be *real* quiet for Simone." When I told him she was awake and in the kitchen, he did a 180-degree turn and walked out and downstairs. I heard him say with exuberance in the kitchen: "Good morning, Simone! Did you have a good sleep?!" How so much LOVE can pour out of this amazing little boy. Mind-blowing to me.

In other news, I'm ecstatic to go the Hanna Andersson outlet. Big weekend...Steve's test, the outlets, Avatar, Russian tomorrow, and then lunch with friends. I might have to remind myself that there's cleaning and paper-grading to do, amidst all the fun. :)

I am loving 2010.

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