Wednesday, September 05, 2007

35 Months

Lucas is almost three (two-and-a-half-almost-three) and he's already a little boy, so grown up from that little infant who barely fit into the seat when we brought him home from the hospital. I'm amazed by all of his growth and I try to think back on that small creature who came into our lives and it almost seems like a dream. I can hardly recall all the wonderful struggles and growth we've gone through over the past three years. At the time I imagined that I would never forget (how could I?) but so much has changed so fast that at times my memory escapes me. I guess that's why I'm writing these memories down every month, at least I can come by here every so often and catch a glimpse of what it used to be like.

Pretty soon we'll remember all too well what we were going through those first few days, months, years when Lucas became a constant presence in our lives. In January he's going to be a big brother and I'm going to have two mandatory writing assignments to deliver every month. It's exciting to think that we'll have a new balance in our family structure and a bit terrifying of course, but now I know that we have so much capacity in our lives, so much love to give. I'm looking forward to our new challenge.

An incredible awareness happened this month. Lucas is dreaming.

Two times this month he woke from his nap prematurely and was inconsolable. The first time that it happened I basically just held him until he calmed down enough so that he could face reality. When I told Xtina about our adventure, she suggested that perhaps he had a nightmare. What an amazing idea, right? I never even thought about that when I was trying to figure out what was bothering him but his behavior definitely pointed toward that being a possibility. Well, a few days later the exact same happened again only this time it was much worse. There was nothing that I could do to make him feel better and for the first time in awhile, I was struggling desperately with a wailing child. Then I remembered about what Xtina said and I asked him if he had a bad dream. With a voice that was thick with snot he emphatically told me yes.

For starters I was wondering how in the hell he even knew what a dream was, assuming that Xtina must've told him about dreams at some point in the near past. Then I tried to imagine what could be so terribly horrible that it would completely incapacitate my little man. The only things that truly scare Lucas is the unknown, things like distant thunder or the sound of fireworks (which actually are pretty scary once you stop to think about them, they sound like bombs but really they're harmless, it's fun imitating war!). Anyway, once he felt comfortable enough to speak about his ordeal, I got him to explain his dream to me.

He told me that he had fire on his face and chest, that he was burning.

Whoa. I began to freak out. I didn't know what to make of it. Was it benign? We've had fires out in the desert, even here in the backyard so maybe it was just an embedded memory that got imaginative in a frightening way. Lucas does have a very good imagination so that's definitely a possibility. Was it from a past life? I know that Buddhism mentions past lives but the idea is so unreal and fantastical that I'm a bit skeptical about an awareness that is so uniquely defined, even if our essence existed before in some way. Was it some sort of prognostication? Now I started to scare myself. You see, two days from that moment, Xtina and Lucas were to board a plane for San Francisco and, as this thought began to percolate in my mind, I found that I was convincing myself that they were going to die in a horrific plane crash. The two people that I cherished most in the world would vanish just like that.

This fear began to consume me, all because I suddenly felt that what Lucas was describing to me was an omen of some kind. Is this possible? I don't know, but if people can convince themselves that they used to be the queen of France two hundred years ago then I guess anything is possible. But I'm the type of person who prides himself on the fact that I don't bend to superstition or fear of the unknown or foolish whims of fancy. I always say that it's ridiculous to waste energy worrying about something terrible that might possibly happen at any time in any place to anyone. That's why I have never been afraid of a terrorist attack even after what occurred on September 11, 2001. If something is going to happen then I'll worry about it when it happens. What has all of our worrying got us anyway, besides a lousy Patriot Act?

Anyway, eventually I came to my senses, only after I spoke to Xtina and was able to see her smile and hear her laugh. It's so nice to appreciate the people that you love, right now, in the moment. So that's what I did as my son told me about his nightmare. I held him close and forgot about the laundry that I was supposed to do and thought that maybe he simply got overheated during his nap since it was about a hundred degrees in there.

Goddamn global warming!

Oh, but that's another story for another time and another place.

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Blogger xtimu said...

He was so tiny and now he is so big. It's all rushing by so fast, but you captured the strangeness of his reaction & the blurble of thoughts from the subconscious that rise after hearing something so frightening from your child. I love love LOVE reading along and seeing things reflected in your memory. :-*

12:50 PM  
Blogger xtimu said...

also we have more to fear from our own government than we do from outsiders. Incompetence makes the world go round.

1:15 PM  

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