Since I wrote about those moments that make the frustration go away, I have noticed the triumphs that make being a mom so worthwhile. It’s the moments when those boys, who did not know more than they were hungry, tired, or wet, understand a new concept or do something that is unexpected and brilliant. It’s the moments that make you realize wow! humans are amazing because we can figure that out.
I remember the first day Evan smiled. I was shocked to learn that babies did not know how to smile. It’s smiling. How easy is that? You’re happy; you smile. It HAS to be instinctive. It isn’t; it wasn’t. Watching Evan in my arms, getting lost in his blue eyes, I would smile, hoping he would smile back. When it finally happened, I was amazed and deeply in love. I realized that he needed me to teach him EVERYTHING, and I thought it was a daunting task, wondering what horrible psychosis will I give him.
Time went on, and I became more comfortable teaching him, until the day I caught him walking a toy person along the floor. I just stopped in my tracks, jaw hanging down, thinking, “I didn’t teach him that.” He had the toy rocking back and forth to mimic steps, and it seemed so natural. But I didn’t teach him that. He figured it out all by himself. He used his imagination and his logic and figured it out. My boy is a genius! Ok, everyone figures that out, and humans are just so god-damn-smart.
Today I was running from one side of the house to the other, trying to get the few morning chores out of the way as well as catch up on the news. (boy, that Ike is going to just rip up Texas.) Usual the boys play on their own during this time. Then I looked over at Sean. He was holding Kung Fu Panda, dancing with him, while he sang a song. What? He was twirling around with Kung Fu Panda, rocking in motion to the babble song he was singing. My god, why don’t I have the video camera charged? (But I know my boys, I’ll get out the video camera, and the boys will stop what they are doing to come investigate what mommy is doing and what is that machine.) I stopped, smiled, and watched as my baby boy used his imagination. When the song was done, Sean smiled at me, running towards me for a hug. It’s moments like that just leave me speechless.
Later on in the morning as Evan and Sean watched Mickey Mouse as I began to make my exit to the shower, Evan declared that he wanted to go to Disneyland. Excuse me? I want to go to Disneyland, please (With that adorable, manipulative toddler please that long esound). Let’s call your Papi because he wanted to go to Disneyland too, and now that they’re coming for a visit he’s balking because your uncle wants to go to but can’t get off work and doesn’t realize we can go again; there isn’t limit of how many times we can go as long as we have the money. So I called, and Evan asked his Papi. My dad accused me of coaching. Um, don’t you remember three months back or so when Evan wanted to go to Disneyland just for the popcorn? The kid hasn’t gone in eighteen months! So now Disneyland is back on the discussion table, especially because Evan has decided the beach is too scary for him.
So Sean can make up tunes and dance to them, and Evan can figure out where he wants to go on vacation. Better yet, Evan wants to be as tall and healthy as Uncle Matt, so he will eat more spinach. I shit you not, he actually told his Papi this, parroting what I mentioned last night over the spinach incident. Last night, of course, “No thank you, I don’t want to be tall and healthy like Uncle Matt. That’s not for me.” Sometimes I feel like I’m being out-foxed by a three-year-old.
But even that just illustrates how much growth and development there is. Maybe I’m not doing such a bad job after all. They’re using their brains, their logic, imagination, memory. I am amazed as I watch them develop and realize this is just the beginning. Then I roll my eyes at the mess they made and get them to throw the toys back in their boxes.