Monday, January 31, 2011

Crap. Middle child syndrome

Earlier this week, in a burst of sheepish realization, I figured out that Andrew very rarely has alone time with me.  Jack has me for 5 hours on Thursday, while the two Littles are in Jackie's Montessori class.  Simone gets a few hours with me on Friday, while the boys are in co-op.  But Andrew's age category rounds up or rounds down so easily that he never really drops through the cracks of activities.

Whoops.  I was going to be so good about that one!  I was the Middle Child, even.  But there were 2 main variables that kept me from being "lumped"...so I'm not sure I got an accurate viewpoint on it.  I was the only girl between two boys, and the only one without Muscular Dystrophy. 

I'm going to have to try harder with Andrew.

I didn't have Julie's tonight, so I planned a Date Night with Andrew. The plan:  Dinner somewhere fun, Trader Joe's to buy lunches he wanted this week, painting a plate at Color Me Mine (thank you, Groupon), and to the thrift store to buy a book for bedtime.  We talked about it all day.  He was so excited that he couldn't stop bouncing when we talked about it.

We went to Tropical Smoothie for him to order anything he wanted.  He got a GIANT smoothie (holy cow, it was as big as he was)...pizza...and a chocolate chip cookie. 

The sweetest, most heart-warming part of dinner?  How he sat there quietly across from me (ever so tiny in his 4 year old body) and just ate his food with a content little smile.  He didn't even talk much.  Just smiled and gazed at me.  And picked through his cookie to eat all the chocolate chips first. 

He looked so happy.  On the one hand, it made me so excited that we could bring him joy like this so easily.  We can make this a part of our routine. But a part of me ached for how rarely this happened in the past.  

The most soul-bending moment?  When we were driving home, and Andrew said in this soft little voice: "I think I'm about to cry." 

Me, stunned: "What? Why?"

Andrew: "Because I am so so so happy right now.  It's about to come out my eyeballs.  I loved hanging out with you."

Really and truly, I don't understand how my world existed before this little crew of humans came into my life.  Because the feeling I felt when he said that?  My goodness, there are no words for the love I have for this little boy.