A letter to my first baby; Emmett Thomas 2.5

So it’s been a while since I’ve written about my main man.  Of course, I don’t ever leave him out, even in Campbell’s monthly posts.  I feel like I’m constantly comparing the two because they are just so drastically different from each other.  Emmett is my easy going kid and has been from day one.  Not a care in the world, sweet as sugar, and incredibly easy to please.  I thought I’d try something different with this post.  I want to write a letter to Emmett instead of just update him and what he’s like.  I want to capture him and what he’s like today, not just what he’s been like the past several months.  This may be a super long post but I don’t care because it’s my space on the internet and I can do what I please on here.  So here goes nothing…

Dear Emmett,

You are 2 and a half years old!  Well, actually, you are about a week and a half over 2.5.  I have to tell you, I want to write about every detail of your life but I also have to be realistic.  There’s just not enough hours in the day to get done everything I try to do.  I’m in way over my head right now with everything I’ve taken on over the past few months but I like it that way and we’re all adjusting just fine.  My baby, you are my first child.  And there’s just something to be said about having that first baby.  Your new friend Charlotte was born to one of my best friends on Wednesday and your father and I were reminiscing about how it felt to have that first baby come into our lives.  We didn’t know what we were doing really, but I knew for so long that I wanted you that I think I took to you like a fish to water.  We have this amazing mommy/son relationship that I hope continues throughout the course of our lives together.  When I found out you were a boy at the 5 month anatomy scan I cried buddy.  I cried long and hard because quite frankly I didn’t really know what to do with a boy.  I couldn’t imagine playing blocks and cars and trucks and dinosaurs.  I didn’t want to have boy things around my house and go shopping for boy clothes.  I was a girly girl when I was younger.  I was super into dolls and Barbies and pink and makeup and dress up.  I wanted to do all that over again with my own baby and now I knew that that’s not how our life together was going to pan out.  I somehow had a feeling that you’d be into all things boy.  Well, my instincts were correct and now, at 2.5 years old, you love cars, trains, trucks, trash trucks, dump trucks, sirens, being active, never sitting still, dirt, messes and all things boys love.  You are 100% boy.  And you know what?  I absolutely love it!  I could sit back and be a fly on the wall for hours just watching you explore your little world.  You amaze me everyday and your imagination is off the charts crazy to watch.

You are super into talking.  You don’t shut up.  Not that that’s a bad thing at all because I love hearing your sweet voice but you really don’t ever stop talking.  I’m actually kind of amazed at how much you have to say.  Your vocabulary is exploding and you seem to learn new words and and string together new sentences almost hourly.  I feel like every time you wake up from sleeping you are a different kid.  You have such a wonderful sense of humor and can also be quite ornery at times.  You get jokes and kid around with us constantly. You want to know something funny?  I had parent/teacher conferences with your preschool teachers a few weeks ago and they told me you don’t say a word at preschool!  I actually thought they were kidding at first but they didn’t think you even knew how to talk!  Apparently you are very quiet in preschool and just sort of keep to yourself.  You don’t like to engage in all the activities that the other kids do.  You like to play trains and trucks all by yourself.  You don’t mind if the other kids come and join you but you just don’t care either way.  You are also a sweet sweet boy with your peers.  I am not sure if I’ve ever seen you hit anyone of them.  Kids like to hit and kick you for some reason.  Maybe you’re an easy target?  I haven’t really figured it out but kids are aggressive with you.  I see a lot of me in you because I was the same way.  I also didn’t speak at school and so I think that’s where that comes from.  You are just so easy going and when someone does kick you or try to be aggressive towards you or yell at you, you seem to look at them like “why are you doing that to me?”.  I am struggling with how I’m going to teach you to stick up for yourself.  On the one hand I want you to hit back and hit back hard but in the adult world violence is not acceptable so I can’t teach you to do that.  On the other hand I love that you aren’t a mean boy and that you make them look like fools for hurting you.  Even when your sister accidentally grabs your hair and pulls it you just look at her and start crying.  I’m so impressed that your first reaction isn’t to just punch her lights out.  You are such a gentle soul and it breaks my heart to see anyone yell at you or make you cry.

You have also been so much fun to watch with your sister.  Your heart is bigger than your own little body.  In fact, I’d go as far as to say that you are made up of 50% love and 50% laughter.  You always need to hug and kiss everyone and everything.  We’ve actually started a little bedtime ritual where you MUST hug and kiss your sister before she goes to bed.  It’s just about the sweetest thing I’ve ever seen in my life!  You actually kiss her and make a sound going “mmmmah!” and then hug her and as you’re hugging her you say “huuuuuug”.  You also are a momma’s boy but now more than ever, have become a papa’s boy as well.  You are crazy about both of us and it’s really been fun to see you get more attached to your papa.  For the first 2.3 years of your life it was ALL ABOUT MOMMA.  If I was in your eye sight you wanted me to do everything-hold you, get you food, put you to bed, play with you, go places with you, give you a bath, brush your teeth.  The list goes on and on.  I even had to go so far as to go out of the room or sneak off and pretend I wasn’t home just so your papa could put you to bed or really do anything for you for that matter.  But, in the past 2 months something has changed.  You no longer care if I’m around or not.  You have your nights for sure and you still get super shy and don’t want to leave my side when I drop you off at preschool or go someplace new with you but you also really enjoy your papa and all he has to offer.  You have even on occasion asked me “where papa go?” when I come in and get you from your naps in the afternoon.  You’ve gotten so used to him doing so much for you that I’m now not the only one who you prefer.  It’s really fun to watch you grow so close to him.  Last night we went to get your hair cut and you asked papa, not me, if he would hold your hand.  You also said, “mama come with you”, which means mama come with ME, but you wanted your papa to hold your hand.  Afterwards we went out to eat and we tried to switch children.  Your papa was holding your sister and I said I’d be in charge of you.  However, you had different plans.  You basically threw yourself to the ground when I tried to hold your hand and only wanted to hold your papas hand.  I am not going to lie, it sort of hurts my feelings when you do things like this but on the other hand I realize how nice it is that you can also just as easily be happy with your papa.

Going back though to how big your heart is, the other day we were grocery shopping and you FREAKED out.  Now, you don’t throw temper tantrums very often and I mean like once every 6 months but when you do, you’re upset.  You were overly tired and had just had it shopping.  It was actually the day after we had come back from Louisiana and you hadn’t napped all but twice out of the past 7 days.  I mentioned to you that we were going to have mac and cheese when we got home and that sparked you.  You started crying and crying about how badly you wanted macaroni and cheese.  I had to check out at the self check out lane and had a TON of groceries because all the actual people were apparently on lunch break.  One person who worked there saw how stressed I was trying to just get the f-ing groceries to register on the scanner with a crying child and quickly raced over to help.  That was a BAD idea.  You cried even harder and just wanted me to hold you at this point.  Unfortunately I had Campbell in the Ergo and you were sitting in the cart strapped in so I couldn’t hold you because I needed to just buy the groceries and get the F out of there.  Well, they ended up distracting you just long enough for me to finish up and pay.  As I walked us out I told you that I understood how upset you were and that I knew you couldn’t express that in any way other than crying.  I asked you if you just needed a big hug and you said yes.  That actually worked and after strapping Campbell into her carseat I grabbed you and just held and hugged you in the parking lot.  That did wonders for you and felt so good for me!  After getting you a snack and putting you in your carseat I started to back the car out and you immediately burst into tears again and asked for “a little hug!!!!”.  Ok, how could I say no to that!?  I slammed on the breaks and dashed out of the car to get to you as soon as possible to hug you.  I mean when your 2.5 year old asks for a little hug, you give him a little hug!  You also ask for hugs and kisses before naps and before going to bed.  You also love sitting in our laps as we read to you and being held.  You are a very touchy feely kid but that doesn’t surprise me at all since I am the same way.  Meme keeps telling me how much you remind her of me when I was your age.

So speaking of you being like me, my mom, your grandma, just laughs when I tell her stories about you because she says I did the exact same stuff!  While I do have a little girl now, she is nothing like me and you are definitely my mini me.  You started preschool in August and the first day was rough for you.  You really didn’t want me to leave and I think you held it together pretty well for the first 3 hours.  However, the last 30 minutes were a bit rough on you.  You started crying and were kind of inconsolable.  You were very happy to see me and jumped into my arms, red eyes and all.  You even started crying again when you saw me.  Anyways, it’s gotten easier but you still sometimes tell me you don’t want to go.  When we get there though you seem to take to it like a fish to water and are really enjoying your teachers and new friends.  You are learning so many new things and we have noticed that after every morning at preschool, you learn new songs and new vocabulary words.  We catch you singing songs all the time.  In fact, your life is a song.  You sing whatever you are doing.  You are going to a Jewish preschool so we are also learning all things related to Judaism.  It’s a real learning experience for all of us and we have really enjoyed learning about Challah, Shabbot, and all the Jewish holidays!  We love the community there and I’m having a great time being one of your room parents.  As I mentioned above, your teachers told me you never speak at preschool.  They asked me what you’re like at home and I told them you don’t stop talking.  They were shocked to hear that.  I was the same way at school though so again, this does not surprise me.

Let’s talk for a second about music.  As I mentioned, you sing about your life.  Well, the other night for whatever reason I had the CMAs on.  I was just doing some house pick up stuff while it was on before starting the bedtime routine and “All About That Bass” came on as an intro song.  You were glued.  You picked up your papas guitar that sits in the corner of our living room on a stand and you brought it over to the TV and started singing, “all about bass bass bass no treble” and strumming the strings to the guitar!  You then ran over to the stand and jumped up on the ottoman with it and used it as your “microphone” and started singing into it!  Don’t worry, I have it on video 🙂  You have such a strong love for music.  Your papa and I think you may be into the music scene or some sort of entertaining when you get older.  This is exactly how my brother started out, with his own guitar and now he’s in LA pursing entertainment so you never know 😉  You also sing us songs from preschool.  You’ve also picked up ABCs, Twinkle Twinkle, Mary had a little lamb, and row row row your boat.  When certain songs on the radio come on you also sort of freak out and love to listen to them.  Some of your favorites are Katy Perry, basically any of her music but especially “Dark Horse”, Ingrid Michelson, “Girls Chase Boys Chase Girls”, Ed Sheehan, “A-Team”, and now your current favorite “All About That Bass”.  Even when you were having all your asthma problems and we had to nebulize you for 10 minutes at a time 4 times a day, the only thing that would get you to sit for longer than 5 minutes were music videos, specifically Katy Perry’s “Roar”.  I tell ya kid, if you stick with the music stuff you’ll go places 🙂

You are also starting to mellow out a tiny bit.  The year 1-2 was very hard on me.  You were into everything and were either at 100% (awake) or at 0% (asleep).  Now you will sit still for things like reading books, which is quickly becoming a favorite activity, Daniel Tiger or Sesame Street, two of your favorite TV shows.  You also have started to take a liking in art activities and sensory activities.  We have started doing “playschool” which is with 3 other families where one mom teaches a lesson every other week and the other moms drop the kids off to learn so that those moms can have a few hours to get a few errands run.  You have been semi into the activities.  Last week you were into the water beads and coloring a butterfly.  You do love to color.  You are also SUPER into “doing work”.  Whenever Papa is outside doing anything with tools in the garage or anywhere in the house you are right there beside him focusing in on what he’s doing.  You are also into watching me clean or do household activities and as long as your sister is asleep, we can get a ton done around the house.  Some of our favorite things to do together are vacuum, dust, spray “windex” (I give you your own spray bottle of water which you think works just as well), fold laundry, and clean the car out.  You are great to do these things with because you’re totally enamored with everything that goes into cleaning the house.

Your favorite day of the week is Friday.  This is because Friday is trash day.  You LOVE watching the dump and recycling trucks go around the allies getting all the trash.  Everything from the guys doing the work to the actual truck you love.  If you’re left alone though you get a little scared hearing the big trucks and not seeing them.  We always have to keep the windows open so you can see what the trucks are doing.  If you’re lucky, you’ll even get a wave from the “guys” as they go by our window.  So while we’re on the topic of scary, you’ve developed a fear of both thunderstorms and shadows.  I think we have Daniel Tiger to thank for this because there is an episode where he’s scared of things and those two things are on that episode.  Honestly I don’t think you’d be scared of these things if it weren’t for that freaking show.  It’s been a real challenge to undo what that show has done to you.  You’re still scared but every single time you bring it up we try to talk you down off a cliff to safety.

I think the last thing I want to mention is hair.  For some reason you’re super into hairdryers, combs, and whether or not I wear my hair down.  Right around the time Campbell was born I actually went and just bought you your own hair dryer from the thrift store for $2 so that you could wonder around and bang it on stuff.  You’re really into gadgets too.  You like playing with headphones, iPhones, iPads, computers and anything with buttons.  Your memory is also crazy good.  You went to the dentist a while back and haven’t forgotten about it.  Every time we drive by you say “that’s Emmett’s dentist!”.  You also know where the zoo is, where the Children’s museum is, where Papa’s work is, where most of your friends houses are, where meme and pepe’s house is, where Papa plays soccer, and where our own house is.   Oh and how could I forget CARS!  YOU LOVE CARS!  I don’t even know where this obsession came from but you can’t get enough of cars.  Maybe it’s the gadgets inside of the cars that you’re so obsessed with or the doors or the lights but you are in love.  While we are driving you’ll spot cars that look like close family members or friends cars and say “that looks like ____ car”.  I used to leave a door stop to the garage on the door and let you play in my car while I got things done around the house.  I don’t really trust you anymore and that you want get into things you aren’t supposed to get into so I don’t do that anymore but it was nice this summer when Campbell was still really small and I was still trying to figure out the two kids thing.

I keep thinking about more things I want to tell you that you’re into right now since you aren’t likely to remember this stage of your life but it’s got to come to an end at some point.  I’ve been writing this letter for 3 days now and I think it’s time to close it out.  Emmett, I can’t say enough amazing things about you.  Really, I’m waiting for the other shoe to drop and for things to get hard with you but so far you’ve been a complete breeze.  You do get upset at things but it’s so easy to give you an explanation and then watch you just understand and move on.  We rarely have to use corrective action on you.  That said, you’re only 2.5 and I’ve hear 3 is MUCH worse than 2 so we’ll see what you have in store for us but right now I want to thank you for being easy on us.  You are why I love being a stay at home mom.  All the friends I’ve met because of you have changed my life and I’ll be forever grateful to you for that.  I have this fulfillment that you’ve created that I’d never ever be able to experience at ANY job.  You make every day worth living and fill my heart with an overwhelming amount of joy.  As I type this I’m listening to you in the monitor singing your ABCs and I’m smiling.  I’ll miss the days when I can spy on you through a monitor as you innocently sing songs and look at books.  You made me a mom and I am forever appreciative of that.  You’ve made me a better mother to Campbell and you’ve made me excited about life again when it was becoming dull and monotonous.  I have wanted you all my life and I can’t believe I was here on this earth for 30 years without you.  I don’t know what I did to deserve such an amazing human being in my life but I’m so glad you chose us.

Love,

Mom, Momma, Mommy

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