To the Moon and Back (Page by Page)

The other day my two year old started piling his books together on top of the bed and I asked him what task he aimed to accomplish. He responded, still focused on his literary tower, that he was building a mountain out of books so that he could stand on its peak and reach the moon (in admittedly a different register). Then he proceeded to stand on top of his library and reach up at the ceiling, excitedly proclaiming, "L reach the moon! L stand on mountain of books and reach moon!" My mouth was agape and as I stood there stupefied I was fortunate that no fly was near to take advantage of my vulnerability (and I suppose so was the fly that escaped such fate, for as much as we hate swallowing flies, they are probably not avid fans of their demise either).

This is really a time of treasures. He is quite conversant - nearly in three tongues - and it is amusing to watch him express himself sometimes using all three in the one sentence. It is amazing to now know what he is thinking. He can crack jokes and call himself funny (he continues to refer to himself in the third person). He associates flamenco music with dragons so that when he asks for dragon music, we know to put on the Spanish guitars. He remembers the lines to most songs he likes and remembers the tunes, demanding we play them. I was pleased that my silly ditties have a fan base since he asks me to sing them but my ego is kept in control when he corrects me on my own tune. Oh, yes. My son has now learnt the way things should be and he sticks to it. "No, mama, like this" he says when I put a toy in the wrong place or do things out of order. We taught him to put away the toys he is playing with in order to play with another and after a few grumblings and one time out, he is a strict convert. Yesterday when he was ill, I decided to let his train run around the track while he took out a puzzle and he admonished me for my slight. First the train goes back in the green box and on the blue shelf, mama, he corrected me, then we get to take out the puzzle. Pardon my indiscretion.

For the past month or so he has also started asking "why" recursively, leading me invariably to Derrida's paradox or a distraction. M watches this all with avid bemusement as he chomps on his tortured teether. M at 6 months, is now much more aware. He is now understanding that he can demand more attention and he is sure milking it for all its worth. Hubby and I are now sleeping in the one bed with him in the H formation of sleep training capitulation, an H that's bent after a hard night on the town, with both of us at the edges in the foetal position, whilst M lies diagonally in the middle, imperious. As much as he reigns over us, he follows the lead of his older brother, whom he avidly adores. L is also becoming much closer with him, much more careful. He picks up M's toys and brings them to him, he has the patience to continually pick up M's teether that falls out of his grasp and say so nonchalantly "here you go, M" as M beams out a thank you. He loves to join M in tummy time, doing the yoga poses that I have been teaching him (albeit only a few being on his tummy). I can't wait to hear them talking, watch them riding their bikes and indubitably both correct me on proper terminology for construction equipment.


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