Thursday, November 12, 2015

Mr. Seven

Sometimes I look at Charles and I see how small he still is.  He still has a roundness to his cheeks, a softness to his skin, and the movements of a little guy: he throws his whole body into action, whether he is bouncing on the pogo stick or climbing a tree.  He has none of the physical reserve and caution of movement displayed by, say, a ten-year-old.  But then sometimes the juxtaposition of this 52-inch tall boy with his younger brothers hits me right in the heart and I see him for the big kid he is: reading chapter books with frenzy as if they were as important as breathing air (they are, my young bibliophile), building LEGOs for hours on end, talking seriously with me about math homework or foster care or Minecraft.

 

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He’s seven years old now, and he’s not screwing around anymore.  He’s serious.  And God help the person who doesn’t take him seriously.

 

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He actually said that to me.

 

Much like his parents, he prefers to be busy all the time.  He reads, builds LEGOs, plays outside, plays inside, or loudly complains of being bored, at which point I make him vacuum or unload the dishwasher (it’s working – he doesn’t complain of being bored much!).  He would rather that we always, ALWAYS go somewhere to do something, and that preference is rubbing off on Jamie, who asks me every night as I kiss him goodnight, “Mom, what are we doing fun tomorrow?”  Indoor bike park, outdoor skate park, Children’s Museum, Jungle Playland, outdoor park, swimming, costumes, LEGOs, train sets, Lincoln Logs… it’s downright exhausting being their mother.  For his birthday, he chose roller skating because it’s not much of a party if we’re not sweaty and running into each other.

 

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Charles, of course, doesn’t run into anyone.  His best friend beat him in the race, and he humbly congratulated his buddy, but now he’s even more determined to practice.

 

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He chose pie instead of cake.  My kids might not look much like me, but they are mine.  They choose pie for their birthdays and they love to read.  Blood will out, as they say.

 

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I guess the best endorsement for our parenting is that Charles is wonderful kid.  He loves his brothers and works hard to make them laugh and take care of them, he has kind friends, and (other than in photos) he smiles a lot.  His occasional tantrums and frustrations serve to remind me that he is still a little boy and he still needs his mom and a gentle touch.

 

Sometimes.  Other times, he gives me a look and says, deadpan, “Mom, thank you cards are LAME.”  So there’s one fight I get to have this weekend.  Thank you cards for birthday gifts might be a bit late, friends.

 

*Thank you, Joe, for the lovely photos.

3 comments:

Tiffany Crain said...

I am loving getting to know Charles better! His school picture is PERFECT!!! Much like the one I took of him for his card. He sure knows who he is!

Stephanie said...

Smiling is lame? Sounds like a certain uncle might have something to do with that statement...

Mom and Dad said...

So love our oldest grandson. He is handsome and really does look like you...but maybe more like a cook...still very handsome and indeed a very nice young man. One a grandparent is thrilled to be related to. love ya