B is at an age where he wants nothing to do with being a baby. When I call him my sweet baby boy, he insists, "I'm not a baby! A is a baby. I'm a big boy!"
Some days ARE hard with a three-year-old (to paraphrase my dear friend Ra, "I don't love 3, but I love my boy."). I'm catching glimpses of the end of the tunnel, though. He has been such a big boy and amazing helper this week, putting away his toys, clearing his plate/utensils at meals, washing hands/putting down the lid to the potty -- all without being told. He has been incredibly helpful with getting things for me when I'm nursing his sister; helping me with the laundry, cleaning and baking; and overall, just showing signs of the sweet, gentle spirit that has been in remission for the good part of this past year.
This morning, he was giving his baby sister the royal treatment. I mean, no one else gets serenaded while eating their breakfast around here.
I eavesdropped as his little plastic monkey "moved in upstairs" into the "tree house" over where Mr. Crocodile lived and began bossing his new neighbor around, to the tune of, "Okay, it's time to go. Shirt, pants, and clean underwear. Let's go!" (You would think we say those things to him, but I don't think I have ever had to tell him to put on clean underwear before.) Yesterday, he asked me for help finding a toy, but I was busy getting lunch together for us. He replied, "It's okay, I'll just call Cue-do and Pie-do for help." He got his little phone and held a brief conversation on it. I asked who Cue-do and Pie-do were, and he responded, "They are my friends. I meeted them in North America."
(That would be a good thing, because he hasn't ever been on any other continents.)
His imagination is taking off and I love it.
I've been extra-emotional this week, thinking about how I won't have him "all to myself" all the time anymore. But I know preschool will be a great thing for both of us and for A, as well. I can't wait to see all the lessons he will learn, the accomplishments he will achieve, the friendships he will make, and so much more in this coming year.
I feel like this week has been a gift of grace for me from the Lord, a reminder that this mothering job is a sweet one, whether that is molding and training at home or gradually releasing our babies out of the nest.
My first little fledgling is going to be trying out his wings next week.
So I'm baking lots of muffins (for his lunch box). They might have a tinge of salt, though, because it's hard to say goodbye to seasons of life.
"If the God you believe in as an idea doesn’t start showing up in what happens to you in your own life, you have as much cause for concern as if the God you don’t believe in as an idea does start showing up. It is absolutely crucial, therefore, to keep in constant touch with what is going on in your own life’s story and to pay close attention to what is going on in the stories of others’ lives. If God is present anywhere, it is in those stories that God is present. If God is not present in those stories, then they are scarcely worth telling." ~ Frederick Buechner