Each morning I get up before dawn, feed Logan, then snuggle him in bed for about half an hour until I need to get dressed for work. Then I just put that sleepyhead back in his crib to sleep until Fillip gets up. He has decided, this plan doesn't work for him. Once he is done eating, he wants to play, disrupting anyone around. Snuggling is not an option. So, now I sleep half an hour longer, then get him up to feed him, and he hangs out with me while I get ready for work. He's right. This is a much better plan.
It is dark when we get up, and dawn breaks by the time I head out for the day. Yesterday morning Logan was playing in the family room, exploring every nook and cranny as only a burgeoning toddler can do. He was trying to get something off the end table, the surface of which is about the level of the top of his head. There was something so special about that moment. The sun was barely coming up, still feint enough and soft enough to be mistaken for moonlight if seen out of context. That soft white light was barely brushing the front of Logan as he stretched as tall as he could to reach the top of the table. Those little bare feet, still perfect and pristine, not yet gangly from walking, went up on tiptoe, his back slightly arching, with the hint of that round tummy in silhouette through his jammies. I don't know if it was the softness of the quiet light at dawn, or the sheer innocent perfection of his posture, but there was something so amazingly sweet in seeing him up on his little toes, reaching for what he could only imagine must be up there.
Anyone who knows me, knows I am rather sentimental. Last year I bought a cookbook that focuses on baking for bake sales. As I was telling Fillip that I would likely get rather teary-eyed the first time I had to bring something to Hayden's first bake sale, I choked up, hardly able to complete my sentence. Fillip just shook his head knowingly with an amused little smile, saying of course he knew I would cry. That's just who I am. Each new moment touches my heartstrings for the very sweetness of childhood. Hayden has recently been requesting a lunch box. We have had extensive discussions with him about it. It is such a cute request, and clearly an indication of him now being influenced by his peers. He is noticing what the others are doing, what they are carrying, and that they have lunch boxes.
I clearly remember starting each school year with my brand new lunch box. It was almost ceremonial the way we would go pick it out, the weighty decision in my hands as to whether to get the one with the Flintstones or the Jetsons, only realizing much too late on the first day of school how childish that was, when another girl had the Bee Gees on her lunch box. I didn't know who the Bee Gees were, but sensed that they were way cooler than the Flintstones.
So far, we have not taken Hayden to pick out his Very First Lunch Box. It's simple really, just another trip to Target, my home away from home. It's just that every time I picture him carrying his new lunchbox to school, I get kind of choked up. I mean, how grown up must he be to have picked a lunch box for school! He will compare what is on the outside, Bob the Builder or Thomas the Train, or Elmo. No, Elmo is for babies! Who knows, but he will make that decision for himself. The first of many where he learns to accept what he has chosen and gets excited each morning to show up at school with it. Then, there is the whole process of filling that lunch box. Do we keep him on the hot lunch program and just send crayons? Good crayons, with a sharpener, not the crappy waxy kind that don't really color, just rub off on the paper in clumps. Do I send him a sandwich? Lunchables? Fruit cup? Fruit rollup? Do they even still make that crap? Will the teacher read him little notes I include to let him know how very much I love him and how proud I am of him everyday, despite my best efforts to keep my little boy a baby?
There is a bigger issue here than fulfilling the request of a lunch box. The main thing holding me back is the sure knowledge of my embarassment when I am in tears, in Target, over the simple task of buying this momentous piece of childhood for my first born, knowing he is more independent each and every day.