Eight Years Old
November 18, 2008
Eight years ago you were born. Proving that colic can in fact strike a family twice. It’s been eight years. We are still waiting for it to end. Anytime now would be fine… just sayin’
You have long ago lost that brand new baby smell. Now the only time I have the urge to smell your head is when you get out of the shower with a completely dry head of hair, yet insist that you washed it.
You were a serious baby. You did not like to smile. Ever. You were so stingy with your smiles that we have very few caught in photos.
Even now you are still a serious kid. Last spring your baseball coach called you intense. That is a very fitting description of your personality. You are intense. You never joked around with your team mates in the dugout, unlike your 9 yr old brother who is always up for goofing off. Your oldest brother helped coach the team and said that you really never even SPOKE to the other kids. When I asked you why you were so quiet you said that you weren’t there for fun. Oh, the seriousness of coach pitch baseball! Who knew Little League was not supposed to be fun.
You Are a prickly pear of a kid who doesn’t like to be held or hugged. Sure you tolerate the good night hug and kiss, but other than that you have no particular longing to sit on my lap or have me hold you. And you never really have. That was why this past year when you were so sick and in the hospital it was particularly heart wrenching to have you holding onto me. I knew how badly you must feel to want to curl up on my lap and have me hold you tightly.
I manage to catch more of your smiles now on camera.
We are going to Disney World next month and we haven’t told any of you kids yet. Mostly because you are the type of kid who likes to ask questions. You also do not like any sort of variation from your normal routine. It sends you into a tailspin. A crazy swirling tailspin where you ask question after question after question, even though you know the answer already. It’s like you just want to have the reassurance that nothing has changed in the three minutes since you previously asked it.
And while I can sit here and type about it all calm and logically, when it is going on it drives me crazy. CRAZY in all CAPS. Because do I really have to answer the question of whether or not you are going to sit next to me in the airplane again. (The answer, by the way, is HELL NO, NOT IF I HAVE A CHOICE.)
(Oh, I kid.)
(Surely I will have a choice.)
It is amazing to me that eight years have passed since you were born. When I look at you I can still see your baby face, just slightly more angular. You love to play outside and climb trees, or whittle with your tiny jack knife. Your birthday list this year has included things like a “machete” a “really really huge jack knife” and a “real gun, or if I can’t have a real one a Nerf gun” You are either going to grow up to be a survival expert or a serial killer. Both of which scare me slightly.
You have also inherited your father’s athletic ability, because Lord knows there is none of it on my side of the family. I come from a long line of people who prefer not to exert themselves or sweat unnecessarily.
You are a hard worker when it comes to perfecting skills that you want to perfect. I wish one of those skills was reading, but you have zero desire to read anything. You will go outside and throw a ball over and over and over again until you can throw it exactly the way you want it to go. Or you will practice doing a jump with your skateboard until that too is perfected. You love to draw and currently are working on perfecting your snake and dragon drawing abilities. As a result I have reams of paper stacked on my counter filled with nearly identical drawings.
Happy Eighth Birthday, my son. You push me to my breaking point nearly every day with your obstinate behavior. But honestly I would not have you be any other way. I love you.
And do not worry, there are plenty of strangers who will be more than happy to sit next to you on the plane.