Saturday, March 22, 2008

Spring Alchemy

I'm not sure what is going on around here but I'll take more of it. Just like I said yes to a second bowl of ice cream tonight after the kids went to bed. (Shhh. Don't tell my butt!)

First, Oliver is sleeping. Every night. All night long. The only exceptions have been when one of the kids has had a nightmare or an accident. I guess I really should consider putting them in separate beds, but I love seeing them curled up around each other each morning when I peek in at them. Plus, they have been so separate for so long, you know? Watching them together now -- day and night -- is like a little gift. After a couple of weeks of prompting Sami to talk directly to Oliver he has now decided that it is his mission to communicate with his brother. He will stand patiently in doorway, shouting: "C'mon Oliver! I want to play with you!" until Oliver reluctantly goes to join him. Today, as the kids and I were at the counter making granola, Oliver reached out and tenderly hugged Sami twice and all three of us were standing there with drippy smiles on our faces.

The other pretty remarkable thing is how communication seems to be happening. Today when Nik came home from swimming with the boys I was rushing around the kitchen heating up leftover chicken and rice for them -- they are always ravenous when they get home. Before dishing up I decided to ask Oliver if he wanted some. His reply: "No! I want a bagel!" Said just like that. Alrighty then, I said, you shall have a bagel! And when we go someplace, Oliver always walks around the car and opens the door for his brother, then waves his arm and says: "C'mon, Sami!" He sometimes gets his words confused: he'll say tv instead of music, water instead of honey, candy instead of carrot (yes, my crazy kid really wants the carrot, not the candy), raisins instead of nuts. But he is still using words and gestures to communicate in a more meaningful way. And he is finally starting to be able to answer the question: What do you want? In the past he would always just repeat the question back to me, which doesn't help anyone. Parallel to this -- which shouldn't surprise me -- is that his receptive language is skyrocketing. There are hardly any moments during the day when I wonder if he is really understanding me.

I'm not sure exactly what all this amounts to, but there is a subtle shift going on inside of my boy. Or maybe the shift is inside our home. I started really noticing these things -- well, the sleep thing was hard to miss -- at almost the same time that I started staying home with the kids. For the last couple of months it has just been me, and Sami and Oliver -- all day, every day. And it has been wonderful. Honestly, I couldn't imagine that I would love being with them so much. So I can't help but wonder if one has something to do with the other. Or maybe he is functioning better because he is sleeping better and he is sleeping better because he is now night-time potty trained. Sometimes life feels a little bit like alchemy to me: you mix together a bunch of ingredients and hope for gold. I wish it were a more exact science. I wish the lines were straighter; that A=B. I wish I didn't still grind my teeth at night. I wish my husband wouldn't bring home ice cream on Friday nights, and that Bryers would quit offering those buy one get one free deals. But for now anyway, we all seem to be blossoming in new and unexpected ways (no cracks about my butt, please**). It seems we are really ready for a change of seasons in this house.

Happy Spring, Everyone!

** that one was for you Niksmom because I know you love a good play on words.


  1. It sounds like the little guy's communication skills are really blossoming! Thanks for another terrific post.

  2. It makes my day better to read posts like this. I miss you guys so much!

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  4. Oh, Christine, I am wounded! ;-) I would **never** make cracks about someone else's butt! (Well, okay, maybe, but it would be all in fun; I promise!)

    Instead I'll simply say this — BLOSSOMING IS AWESOME! You deserve the beauty and wonder of it every single day. And the sleep?? Even better! (Send some my way?)

    (BTW, first post was removed for typos, NOT butt jokes! I swear!)