Saturday, 11 May 2013

Happy Birthday to a Sweet Little Man Who Now is Three

Zinadine, you are all of three years old today. It's a lot of years for someone who is little. Except you're not little, you're big; as you like to remind me.

You have milkweed soft fly-away hair and the best laugh ever. I tickle you just to hear that laugh. You like puns and fake surprises and the Ba-Shooom! game (which involves throwing rolled up socks with Safiya and Babo (Mr. S.) and rules Mama doesn't get - on purpose).

that halo is your hair in the sunlight!

You walk like Pocoyo. You jump from things as much as you can. You walk your fingers all over my collarbone when you nurse. You are passionately attached to particular shoes, and whatever small object with four wheels has your fancy on any given day. Sometimes, you tell your sister not to "bug me! she's bugging me!" when she hugs you, which makes her hug you again. Sometimes you tell me "Doooon't look at me!" I always sneak looks, just so you know.

I want to keep listing things so as to not forget every little bit years from now when you zoom by or glance up from a book or hole up with friends. You say "Awwwww" at tiny baby animals. When you're angry (which is very rare), you stare at me and chuck whatever it is in your hand. You want to do everything yourself - "Can I do it?" I think you chirrup.

You so look forward to your Babo coming home, and immediately show him, very seriously and importantly, whatever you've got clutched in your hand or whatever is occupying you that very second.

 You only eat the icing.

You've hated both socks and baths since you were a babe. You always have very dirty feet.

Every time we cross the Don Valley bridge on the subway, you say "O!" and get up on the seat and look out the window and start reciting all the things you see: "I see cars and trees and river and tracks and trees and cars and buildings and tracks again - I see world everywhere!" Your best is being outdoors.

Most mornings; anytime we're in the upstairs playroom, actually, you open the window (which doesn't have its screen on yet) and start yelling "HI!" at anyone and everyone on the street just below. And everyone smiles and says hi and waves back (after momentary confusion at your little voice from the heavens and split-second consternation which evaporates when they see me too). And that is you, I think. All your energy, like your hair, radiating out and beaming at all of us around you.

These are all things you do and say as your three-year-old self; how you makes us feel and love and be our family is even more complex and spring-fed and wonderful and, I think, more than your after-midnight-Mama can write right now.

We love you, little man. Every second, every snuggle, every hand-hold, every jump. Every everything about you. Happy Birthday, sweet Zinadine.

Tuesday, 7 May 2013

Pushing Boundaries

"You know what?" I say, "Seeing people that I kind of know outside of the place I usually see them sometimes feels kind of awkward for me."

(audible sigh of relief from Safiya) "Me too!"

Yesterday we did lots of new things. We tried a new social thing, with mixed results, but we'll try it again to give it another chance. We found a new-to-us park, which was a resounding success because trains run fairly regularly by it, and Zinadine fairly shook with the excitement of it, little fists resonating his delight by his sides.

watching the train at the park!
We took streetcars instead of walking the whole way, much to our relief when trying to boot it to karate class. And, we tried karate class on a different day, because Safiya's trying to add extra lessons. This resulted in her being shaken a little out of routine, and enabled her to to be more open to noticing something about another student in the class and she paid attention to this girl, which is a fairly big deal for her, and she reported it, all small-proud-like. I didn't know we were going to do all this when I woke up this morning. We just sort of went for it.

I'm trying little things, like small crafty things to keep my hands busy. New crochet stitches, braiding, small weaving. Easy pick up, easy put down, easy finish. Breaking routine by adding small things, like plant a few flowers instead overhauling the whole garden. Stopping for ice cream on the way to picking up said flowers on a hot spring day because that's a way to do the fun. Ice cream is always fun. Seriously, have you ever had un-fun ice cream? I think not.

braiding at the park for a new project

But the fun on top of fun (this is getting ridiculous) is on the inside. Because of this practising shifting my thinking, I've come to treasure my own idea of fun. It's silly, but my past version of someone who is a fun person has always been someone else's version. You know, the person who gets invited to all the parties, the person who can be un-self-consciously silly. As an introvert, trying to be that person is a disastrous idea, and trying to hold yourself up to it is failure-ridden and stressful. However, if I try to think about inviting myself, perhaps myself as a small girl, to have fun, it would probably involve a lot of quiet reading, outside. Maybe with someone else who likes to read. And making things. And serious discussion about the world. And quite possibly some Star Trek. And probably lots of other stuff I haven't thought of yet.

Old boundaries of self. Walking over them is a awkward and uncomfortable at first, but probably way more fun. We'll see.

Monday, 6 May 2013

Happy Like Roses

Because I don't want to forget.

This kind of happy is delicious, like face-in-roses fragrance drinking delight. It is so immediate, and almost tangible and you think, for just one moment, that you could live like this for the rest of whatever, face planted firmly in a rose.

Waking up happy was a thing I'd forgotten. It's not 'til it happens that you realise it's been so long. So long since anticipation was the thing first in my mind.

And, like roses, it will pass, which is why I'm writing it down here. To help it return again when the time comes. To say, "remember? remember; like roses..."