Sunday, March 18, 2012

Big Kid.

Every age and every stage comes with its ups and downs, but I am loving 5 (mostly) so far.  It seems like most traces of baby are gone.  He has these long, drawn out thoughts and contemplations and often they are pretty insightful for a kid.  Sometimes they are entirely made up, like how he told me he spent the night on his grandparents' couch in his sleeping bag and then fell off landing completely upside down and vertical.  It would seem his head was on the ground and his feet were straight up in the air.  He told this story with such detail and gusto that I wanted to believe him.

I have to admit though, when the little kid fears come creeping into his big kid mind, it takes all my strength not to laugh.  Yesterday I decided he was big enough for me to take the child safety lock device off the car.  He's been wanting to open the door himself and I think he's a pretty responsible kid, so I flipped the switch and told him I did so.  His brow furrowed and the color drained from his cheeks.  His lip quivered and his eyes filled with tears.  Then he wailed, "NOOOOOO!!!!"

When I asked him what was wrong, he just started yelling for me to change it back.  I calmed him down and he was just doing that deep breath hiccuppy sniffle thing where he sucks air in.  I asked him again what was wrong.  In his most serious manner, or as serious as one can be with snot dripping from his nose, he asked me if the door can be opened while the car is still moving.  I explained that it will only open if he pulls the latch so if he just doesn't touch the latch, the door will stay closed.

"Oh.  So I just shouldn't touch it unless you tell me?"

"Yes.  When the key is out and you're allowed to unbuckle your seat belt, then you can open the door.  Otherwise, hands off."

"Oh."  But the little wheels in his head were spinning, you could see it in his eyes.

A little while later, safely in the house and away from the car door, he asked me again if the door could open when the car was in motion.  I explained the answer just as I did before.

When we got in the car to run an errand, I noticed he kept his hand neatly folded and away from the door.  I might have giggled a little.

But when the car was stopped and the key was out and he unbuckled his belt and looked at me bright-eyed with a "Can I do it now?" look, he had no problem at all opening the door and jumping out like the big kid he is.

Now I just need to teach him to shut it before he runs to the front door.


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  1. What a sweet story! I love watching that little-kid-to-big-kid transition. The mix of being so capable and yet still so dependent is charming.

    1. Thanks! I find myself completely unprepared for how one minute he's so big and the next so small. It's amazing to watch.

  2. I love how the wheels are turning in his little mind. It's wonderful when they can at least (eventually) articulate why they go into a tailspin. It's still a mystery sometimes with our toddler, but at least the bigger boy can tell me what's wrong. So cute how he is getting bigger and loving it.

    1. The articulation is so welcome when something is wrong. Sometimes I'm not sure I need 14 hours straight of pontification on the weekends, but that's another matter. :)

  3. If I recall correctly from my own childhood, kids enjoy opening doors much more than they do shutting them. :)

    1. It would appear that there is little joy in shutting the door. I'm pretty sure there was already an eye roll yesterday when I asked him to do it.

  4. I loved the way you wrote this - it actually shows how much you love your child just in the way you are observing his thought-processes and weighing out all his little mind options.
    I loved 5.
    It is a very insightful, mystical, philosophical age.
    Six - less so.
    Seven - hmm. Not sure yet. But grab onto 5. Write it all down.

    1. :) His little mind options. He's a thinker, that boy. His need to process and understand ever last detail is more than I can handle some days, but his innocence is just so precious. I do love him though, that is true. Thanks for reading!