I have written and rewritten this post at least four times, it is really choppy. It frustrates me when the words do not flow, but I am willing to try again.
My son turned four on December 29th. Four-years-old and very much a little boy, the baby grew up and the toddler waltzed off into the sunset and now I have a very active, very verbal boy on my hands. I look at him and he looks at me and I think that we are both amazed by the other.
He tells me daily that he wants to be just like me and I think about the pressure of trying to live up to that expectation of being omnipotent and omniscient. Most of the time I just shrug my shoulders and accept that I can only do my best, but sometimes it is not that easy. Sometimes I see him struggle with things that bother him and it pains me because I recognize the fight.
He has my body. His hands and feet look like miniature versions of my own and I suspect that when he grows into maturity he’ll have no problem wearing my clothes, assuming that he doesn’t get too many of the genes of his maternal grandfather in which case it is possible that he may end looking down at me.
He has a very sweet temperament, he is loving and kind. Most of the time he is very careful with his little sister. No one makes her laugh harder. But like me, he has a blazing temper. I am told by others that the face he makes when he is angry is the same as mine, but I cannot say for certain. Fortunately it is rare that the temper shows itself, but like most children his age if he is tired it begins to rear it’s head.
He is in his second year of preschool and as part of the classroom activities they celebrate the birthdays of the children. The birthday boy/girl receives a crown, the children sing Happy Birthday (in Hebrew of course) and the parents typically bring in cupcakes as a special treat.
Since my son’s birthday falls during Winter Break we had to wait until just after the first of the year to celebrate his birthday in school. As my office is across the street from school I was able to come by in time to help sing Happy Birthday to him.
It was such a cool experience. He was so proud and so attentive as the children sang to him. It made me choke up a little because for a moment he looked so old, like such a grownup to me. I was almost able to picture him as an adult, the image was in my head, but then it was gone. And that is ok, I want to enjoy this time with him, and I am not ready to be in my 50s or 60s yet.
I was only able to stay for a brief time. I took some pictures and then ran back to work. Apparently I missed out on some excitement.
After the children finished singing they passed out the cupcakes that we had brought for the children to enjoy. My son was especially proud and excited about this because he had helped to make them.
All was going well until one of the boys decided that he did not like the cupcake. He took it and crushed it, or to quote my son he “squished my beautiful cupcake and threw it away.”
This set off my son. He was offended and angry and had a minor meltdown in the classroom. That was last week, Since then I have spoken with him on a couple of occasions about this incident. He is still angry about it.
And so I have learned that like me he has a memory like an elephant. Do us wrong and we will remember. It is not necessarily a fabulous trait. It has it’s benefits, but it also has it’s downsides. I don’t want him to hold onto the pain, transgressions and or embarrassing moments of past events the way that I am wont to do.
I know how to deal with it, after years of experience I am used to it. But I don’t want this for him. There are too many good times and good things in life to allow something stupid to take away from it. Anyway, for now all we can do is try and work with him and teach him not to do this.
He may want to be like me, but there are somethings about me that are better left just for me to have and to hold.