He saunters in without realizing how intense his presence is. Sometimes he hangs out in the doorway of the kitchen, with his arms in an iron-cross. It’s a full-body workout for most people, but for him it seems effortless, almost like breathing. At the dinner table, his spoon becomes a weapon, an airplane, a guy with a gun. If it is taken away from him, his fingers become smoking guns, or walking bad guys, or missiles that scream before exploding. He eats entire bags of carrots in one sitting. He eats breakfast and a half hour later he eats again, and on until the end of the day. His diet is the food of Olympians: fruit, oats, anything crunchy without added sugar. He is still only when he’s sleeping.
She dons numerous outfits a day, usually in some contrasting style or color. Hair-twirler, song singer, marker-lover. She makes beds like a pro. Although a little emotionally fragile, she is also strong in spirit. She loves her friends. She is starting to write and read and adores school. In her heart she is a princess, and she loves to be in charge of anyone who lets her. She has a dry sense of humor that is slowly unfolding. Though she’s afraid of being in her room all by herself, she is not afraid of walking to the park alone. Her bravery gets her into mischief, but I know one day it will take her places where no one else is willing to go.
His eyes never cease to make my heart flutter. He never stops talking, unless he’s in the middle of a project. He loves to build, create, and imagine. His favorite words are, “Mom, look at this!” He knows exactly how to act around babies to make them smile and feel comfortable. He is sweet and gentle when he’s not trying to impress, and by not trying he endears you to himself. His mind is always thinking, and often there is more going on inside than meets the eye. He loves to make people laugh, whether it’s by scaring them, telling a joke, or making silly faces. He is into magic shows and can mow the grass beautifully.
Her hair and personality match perfectly. Bouncy, beautiful, noticeable. She loves people so much it literally makes her heart hurt sometimes if she can’t be with them. She has a servant’s heart and when she sets her mind to it, she can accomplish anything. She is not intimidated by age, and has a special ability to converse with people who are much older. She likes to know “the plan”, and isn’t so fond of surprises. She loves to give gifts and holds onto her own possessions very loosely. She likes her space, but has learned how to share generously.
Her belly sticks out as she stands with her hands behind her back, then she swings her arms purposefully as if she is about to do something with great meaning. She loves to squeal at Toby the rabbit and say, “Good boy!” Every other word is usually, “MaMA? MaMA?” She points to the door and says, “Outside?” She also calls all her babies “Abby”, gives them kisses, and tells them, “Good gooorl!” When it’s time to go to bed, she knows if any of her babies are missing, and says, “Baby? Baby?” until all are present and accounted for. Her shoe fetish begins first thing in the morning and sometimes lasts throughout the night as she sleeps with her shoes on her feet. She walks around with a pretend phone, laughing and conversing before saying, “Die- die!” and hanging up.
These are my children, the ones who fill my days with joy and fun; sometimes sorrow and exhaustion. As someone said last night, and I echo her words, I would like to believe that I am enjoying every moment. Yes, they turn ten in what seems a blink! But I love seeing them change and grow. Sometimes the change seems slow, other times it happens overnight. One day their head is covered in peach fuzz, the next day it’s in a pony-tail. One day they’re on my hip, and the next day they’re riding their bike around the block. They don’t stay babies forever, and I’m glad of that! I love every stage, every age, and every page of this book of life we’re writing together.