My due date was on a Friday, which was also my last day at work before maternity leave. I joked with coworkers and friends that I'd like the baby to give me the weekend, and then be born on the following Monday, so I wouldn't waste a day of maternity leave just waiting around for him or her to arrive.
And that's exactly what he did.
He weighed a smidge under 8 lbs when he was born. He was completely perfect. He's considerably taller now, but he looks just the same. Or, rather, I still see him the same. I know I always will.
I think when we see people, especially loved ones, we don't just see the external stuff. We have a kind of x-ray vision about them. We see what they look like, of course, but layered with that, in a sort of other dimension, are ALL the ways we see them, and have seen them, feel them, feel about them, hear them, and so forth.
And then they belch loudly and you come out of your reverie.
Last night he went to bed without a fuss for a change. Because in the morning, it would be his birthday.
When I drop him off at school, he doesn't want me to kiss him, because "the teenagers" (actually, they're only sixth graders, so they're what, eleven years old?) might see it and make fun of him. I settle for a high five, because I was terribly shy when I was little and that part of me doesn't want the "teenagers" making fun of him either. Even if it's only in his mind.
He is always enthusiastic about foods he likes. This morning, while he ate a large hunk of strawberry rhubarb pie for breakfast, and sampled one of the mini brownies I made for him to bring to class today, he shook his head and said "Mom, I love your cooking."
Speaking of brownies and "teenagers," as we pulled up to the school this morning, he suddenly asked why he couldn't put the container of brownies in his backpack. I'm assuming it's so those pesky "teenagers" wouldn't make fun of him because he was carrying a container of brownies. I said no, if they went into the backpack they'd fall all around in the container and get messed up. He didn't say anything. I handed the container to him through the window of the car after he'd got his backpack on, and as I pulled away, I saw him maneuvering the container – on its side, so all the brownies could spill around inside of it – so it was sort of behind him and hidden a bit under the backpack. The whole time he was doing this, he had one eye on the "teenagers" where they stood in their teacher-designated spot on the blacktop. It's a tough world out there.
He was extremely grateful for the Star Wars toys he received this morning. He said "Thank you" a lot. He's a nice boy.
He allowed Julia to hold his new Jabba the Hut toy. A bit later, after breakfast, toothbrushing, and getting dressed, he suggested to Julia that they play with ALL their Star Wars toys combined. Julia was delighted. "Mom! Alex wants to play with our Star Wars toys TOGETHER!" He's a generous big brother sometimes.
Other times, of course, he wants to play by himself. Then he has to defend himself from the Wrath of the Little Sister. Good thing the Force is strong with him. (I know, I'm blending outer space sagas.)
He loves to draw. He loves all kinds of animals and bugs and fish and birds…and, of course, dinosaurs. He is kind, and gentle, and caring, and protective.
He now wants the colors of his bedroom to be these: Green for the grass…blue for the sky and the water. Oh, and orange curtains. That'll work.
He is a ray of sunshine.