Recently in Dear River Category
We've come to a place of balance, you and I. From August until the end of September we were having a lot of issues. Me loosing my temper and you not listening at all, arguing, and throwing tantrums. I think, as always, you and I have a reciprocal relationship. I throw you out of alignment and you do the same to me. We're very similar in some ways. New routines can be hard--with school starting. Now we've settled into a groove again. We're a team and communicating well. I miss that. It seems like that month lasted forever and I woke up and didn't want to face another day of feeling stressed, tired and arguing with you. I'm so glad that's over, for now. In almost five full years, we've consistently moved in and out of those tough times and we always will. I suppose it is just part of parenting. Really, it is part of any relationship. When you truly love someone, you will work at correcting that balance instead of throwing in the towel. If you love someone as much as I love you, throwing in the towel will never be an option. And so, forward we go.
Preschool has brought a lot of changes this year. You now love to draw. Last year you would refuse. You would say, I don't know how. You wouldn't even try. Now you draw everything. People are my personal favorite. Your muscle men and iron man suits. Honestly, I was afraid you would never like to draw. It's just never interested you. Then something clicked in your development. You never drew the people that are circles with arms and legs coming off them. You instantly just started drawing people with torsos, heads, arms, legs, feet, hands, rocket blasters, unibeams, etc. Drawing becomes a foundation for your stories. Everything become exaggerated, fantastical, detailed. You are my little writer in the making. The boy who produces entire story arches on the spot with a beginning, middle and end and a clear conflict and resolution. You think in a narrative and your imagination is wild and intense. I look into your amber eyes, this warm, goldenish shade of brown, and see you lost in your own exciting worlds. I see myself at that age. Pretend wasn't just pretend with me. Pretend was the best possible way to play. It had story lines and plots and developed characters. So when you burst out with some off-topic, imaginative piece of thought (like asking your friend what he thought if there was a bridge that stretched between his house and yours in the middle of a game)--I know, River. I know, exactly where it came from. It came from a mind that never stops piecing together words. A mind that dreams up stories. That's my mind too.
As a side not you have begun being able to take off the prefix of a word and add a new letter and then tell me what the word is! Reading, River. READING! I screamed when you did it. I got up and fanced around. You also are writing. One and two word journal entries. The amount of progress from only fifteen days of preschool is amazing. I can't wait to see what you can do at the end of the year!
For you, social interaction is like crack. You start conversations with strangers. You don't have the wisdom yet to see the body language of leave 'me alone kid' or 'I don't really care'. You will just stand close and talk about your favorite cartoons, your favorite books, the dreams you had. You are relentless in making friends. You play with much older children and much younger. Being without a friend is so boring to you. I know because I can see it in you but also because I was the same way. You want to live at the neighbor's house. I was the child that never missed home. That would go for a string of sleep-overs and weeks of camp. I loved being around people, meeting new people, being away from home. My little boy that would cry and bang the door if I so seldom left him--has grown into a confident and friendly child. I have no worries at the thought of you in school. I know I am not enough to satisfy your need for people. I never can be. You are a person who craves others.
For many reasons, but mainly your energy and need for social interaction besides your mother, we started you in martial arts. You are a combination of sullen looks and shy in class. But quick to open up with a bit of joking. I spend my time peeping out of the little kid room, watching you slowly warm to this new situation, worrying that you won't like it. But you came out last time and said, "I was shy at first but I had fun."
You give me attitude now and can imitate your father's often heard sarcasm. We have a lot of talks about being rude and polite and fine-tuning behavior. Still, you have a hard time tuning in to listen, thinking before you act, staying still when it is time to listen. Your main concerns are friends and thoughts running through your own head. Let me tell you a secret. I still have trouble with all these things. In social situations I don't really think at all, I just act. I often am guilty of putting my foot in my mouth, but I'm also so seldom intentionally cruel. I think you are the same way. Shocked when someone snaps at you, but you really didn't hear us. Not because you physically couldn't or were purposefully being rude, but because you were so caught in the situation and in your enjoyment of it. I also have trouble listening. My thoughts wander, I burst out with something that seems totally unconnected from the current topic. Ah, River. I will always understand but that doesn't mean I will always be kind. It's hard to deal with someone like us, I think. Flighty and dreamy and absentminded, distracted and silly. I often say you are my divine revenge. I say it with a smile. You allow me to see myself from other's points of view. It doesn't mean I will change, but it does me I understand. I understand how frustrating I can be from you. But I'm so very, very glad you have a head full of tumbling words and stories. I can't wait to see what amazing things you do with the gift we've both been given!