Yesterday, our wee baby sat up for the first time. Or, to be precise, I sat him up and he balanced, determinedly if drunkenly, until he slowly toppled to one side. We conferred, and decided to try again. With each effort, he sat for longer periods and was more stable. And with that as a catalyst, it is clearly time for my semi-monthly parenting review.
So, the hair is still a deep red, the smiles are still enormous, the dimples still there score! but the wee voice is growing and deepening. (yes, I know I'm talking about a baby, and not an adolescent.) Our little man is learning to speak up, to express himself with his sighs, coos, grunts and - especially - roars. That's fine, though: I ddn't grow up in a family of shrinking violets, so this seems normal to me. My poor partner occasionally seems overwhelmed, but he's a more delicate spirit in some ways. Excepting of course, the ways in which he is oxen, dig your feet in stubborn..
No longer can I cart around a sweet little person, relaxed and happy in his car seat. Now he's straining at the straps as he tries to sit up, working furiously to shove his feet into his mouth, or gnawing on anything within reach. Dinners are now truly a family affair, as the baby sits on his father's lap, and chews along with the rest of us - on his father, his bib, or anything he can snatch off his unwary parent's plate. Go, bibba, go. I tip my hat to your tiny self and the determination and energy that suffuses you.
And my eldest? Today I am in awe of his four-year old competencies, as he supplies himself with tissues, offers to read his brother a stoy, clears away his own cereal bowl, and says 'please' and 'thank you' until the cows come home. To be fair, I should have suspected something - he's never so polite as when he's under the weather, but who needs Mama intuition? "I'm a tad off my usual mark," he told me, composedly. And the thermometer agreed. My clever boy, who today amused himself while his mother cast inventive curses upon those who still have not, will not fix her oven....apparently we learn from our mistakes.
Today, there is harmony and good will in my world. Is this a side effect of having a sick kid? Ah, fuggedaboudit - I'll take what I can get. Muchas gracias to Autumn, who came over last night and helped entertain boys as we fed and juggled them in and out of the bath. And my love to my partner, who is in the midst of his 3-day business trip and sounds joyous. He's earned this escape, and I can only cock an amused eye at his timing...