42nd bday w/e part 3, a list

Because this is the last time I will be able to write for a while, I am going to make a list of some things I don’t want to forget. Most of it is about S, who will very soon be 14 months old.

–Today S learned how to sign “book” and “dog.” Yesterday he learned how to sign “hat.”

–Today S learned how to say “shoes.”

–His words to date: Dada, baba (bottle), Mama, wa-wa, dat (That), nana (Banana), hi, hey, hewoh, yee-yuh (Eye), tuh (Toe), bebe (baby), bebe-buh-buh (belly button), eh-oh (apple), Pa-Paw (what he calls my dad), buh-buh (bye-bye) and I’m sure a few others I’m forgetting. His favorite blanket, which he has really bonded with now, is still just “dat” or “dat-dat!”

–The other day, he pulled toilet paper off the roll and handed it to me while I was taking a poo. When I didn’t take it quickly enough, he tried to jam it between my legs, as he has seen me do. When I flushed the toilet, he waved bye-bye to the poo as it went down and closed the lid for me.

–Last week, we went to an amazing Indian restaurant and he ate so well. He and I are old pros at going out to lunch together. The baby-led weaning philosophies really helped me hone my approach to eating and food with him, and his adventurous, joyful, plentiful eating is one of the things I am most proud of as a mama. It is an all-in approach and not easy to deal with sometimes—S still wears a body-bib, one that covers his arms and torso and lap, and he gets it incredibly messy. And the floor is often a mess, too. This is because I’ve stressed experimentation over manners and have not shied away from mess. Believe me: I am getting super-exhausted by the mess at this point and am trying to instill more manners! But that’s okay…

Because the thing is we go out anywhere together and he tries new things and he enjoys our date. I put him in his body-bib with the “kapows!” and lightening bolts and stick a placemat to the table and give him whole foods, a little bit of everything. He eats healthy stuff and fun stuff and extremely well-roundedly (I am sure to give him something from each food group each meal).

And what’s more: he sits there. He does not fuss, complain, cry. He likes sitting there. He likes trying new foods. At the Indian restaurant, he picked up a crisp dosa that was bigger around than his face and he ate the entire thing, swinging his little legs. Then some spicy veggies, spicy rice, white rice, chick peas, spicy yellow lentils, yogurt and cucumber.

Everywhere we go, we get comments. “I’ve never seen a baby eat like that,” or “I’ve never seen a baby behave so well.” People are amazed by him, which makes me think we’ve done something right. I’ve never raised a kid, so I don’t know the difference, except for the glimpses I see of other kiddos…but I don’t make assumptions because those kids could just be having off moments.

S’s favorite foods are kid foods, to be sure: peas, green beans, mac n cheese. But he also loves beef bulgogi and will eat any kind of fish you put in front of him as if he is starving. He polishes off adult portions of fish! He also eats raw salad—I think this is somewhat rare in a toddler. He’ll munch away on raw spinach, lettuce, and he’s nuts about coleslaw. He eats kale and dried seaweed. He’s a fan of (well-cooked) eggs florentine.

–I think he is recognizing himself in the mirror. He doesn’t think it is another baby. He looks, grins, and pats his head, his chest. He looks at my reflection and smiles.

–For my birthday, DH drew a picture of S on a chalkboard and surprised me with it. “Happy birthday, Mama!” he wrote beside this little boy looking up out of the chalkboard. I, of course, sobbed. When S saw it, he became very excited, pointed to it, and then patted his own head, saying, essentially, That’s me, that’s me!

–After I sobbed at the chalkboard, DH took me into his arms and I sighed against him. It was an unplanned thing…he started rocking me, just like we rock S sometimes. I went limp, and he rocked me was if I were a baby. I was able to utterly relax.

–A mama friend recently texted me: “I’ve always admired your parenting. You’re all-in.” I love these words and think of them often. It’s so tiring being an all-in sort of person all the time, but I wouldn’t want to do life another way.

–Tonight DH told me that when he holds me in his heart, he sees a collage that is bright and bold and messy and he loves it more than anything he’s ever seen. “You’re so beautiful,” he whispered. Then he went down on me and I had an orgasm in about thirty seconds—really.

–I don’t think I have ever been bored. I mean, it can get “boring” when S wants to put the crayons in the box and take them out again fifty times instead of drawing with me, but that’s not really what I mean. I constantly yearn to create, and I’m glad I’m made that way, even though it can make me feel sad sometimes because there’s not enough time to create all of the things I’d like to.

–Dang, I have to go to bed. There’s more to say. But this will do. It has been nice reconnecting with self and with anyone who has read these scattered field notes from a 42nd birthday.

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  1. Love this, friend. :) (And as a speech therapist, I love love love how little S is so good with his words!)

  2. Another lovely post! I have so enjoyed these! And it sounds like you have a foodie on your hands. That is something quite special :)


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