Thursday, January 04, 2007

27 Months

“Now is a good time to explore.”

That is the fortune Lucas received when he opened his very first fortune cookie over the holidays. That about sums it up for this stage of his life. He is the most eager, inquisitive and thoughtful little guy I ever knew. At a little over two months he already has amazed me with his seeking spirit. Many times Xtina and I will find him alone in his room creating play or simply reading a book to himself. While other times he runs around boisterously exclaiming his need for us to get up off the couch and play with him. He's so confident and likable I know that whatever avenues in life he chooses to explore they will open up with wonder before his eyes, a shimmer will form in those very eyes and the possibilities will be endless.

Quite often, due to pressure from certain family members, or just from the heavy hand of society we wonder if having only one child is acceptable (maybe he needs a friend?). Sometimes our hearts fill up when we see how wonderful he is and want to continue producing more magic for the future. But then at other times we want to always have the time for Lucas so that he will know our hearts completely. It's a big quandary and one that doesn't come until you have kids of your own. I remember when I was an only child for the first decade of my life and though I constantly pined for a companion, I also cherished the time I had alone with my imagination. I lived a great deal within myself and create worlds that fascinated me beyond what this world has to offer. I believe that because I was able to foster my inner creative spirit that I learned to live with hope and passion. I found that my dreams meant far more than what others could provide it. I held a special blossom within me that society couldn't touch. Now, when I see Lucas delving into a book or playing with his train track oblivious to his amused parents, I feel such joy rise within me. Though it can be a struggle at times he has his life before him waiting to be explored. I want to see through his eyes and find that enthusiasm as I make my way through my fourth decade. There's always so much more to learn and become. I thank Lucas every day for helping me see that once again.

As he becomes more independent (even at two he is learning the power of that word) I sometimes marvel at his self-assurance. We were playing at the park one fine day when Lucas learned (with the help of a fellow dad) that he could throw his ball up above the slide and it would come rolling down. As I watched this I wanted to get involved and help him learn this neat trick. So after the other dad finished playing with him I went over to show him how he could do it all by himself. But he kept trying to throw it up where the other dad had been, which wouldn't work (it was too high and wouldn't come down by itself anyway). After about five minutes of struggling to show him the proper slope of the slide and best angle to throw at, Lucas suddenly grabbed the ball in one hand and proceeded to push me away with the other hand.

“Go sit over there.”

He says to me pointing toward a bench where Xtina was lounging in the shade. For a second I didn't know what he meant, then I realized that he was tired of my lesson. He wanted me to leave.

“You want me to sit with mommy?”

I asked him, a little stunned.

“Yes, go sit with mommy.”

I left him to his game and walked dejectedly over to my beautiful wife. I told her the whole story and we watched our little wonder with mirth on our lips. Even though I was slightly perturbed by Lucas' snub, I was also happy that he felt comfortable enough to tell me exactly what he was feeling.

But then, quite often, we also find out how much a two-year-old still clings to us. Most often when we read to Lucas we let him pick the books, but sometimes he just wants to listen to us read (it doesn't matter what it is). The other day I was sitting on the couch reading the pulitzer prize winning novel “Lonesome Dove” by Larry McMurtry. Lucas crawled on the couch and climbed right into my lap.

“Read to you.”

He tells me. Of course that obviously means that he wanted me to read to him (we're still working on those pronouns). I began to read to him from the book and he promptly laid his head down upon my chest. For twenty minutes I read to him about horses, the plains, cattle, whores, beauty, courage, outlaws and whiskey. He never moved his head once totally content to hear the sound of my voice pulse through my ribcage. After awhile I thought that maybe he was asleep so I asked him. He lifted his head for a moment and said,

“No, daddy read to you.”

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Blogger xtina said...

your words inspire, baby. to live it and then read it conveyed with such gentle mirth and rich experience, lifts me up. i feel terrible from this 'orrible cold, but your words are like a balm. thank you for capturing it so well.

8:22 PM  

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