Thursday, May 20, 2010

More Mom thoughts

I've been thinking about the kids, and my relationships with each of them. As babies, they really are just extensions of you - completely dependent on you to meet their every need, they don't really know themselves as 'separate'. Fast forward 8 years and they are completely separate from you. Still dependent, but separate.

Evie is completely different from me, and I don't always 'get' her. Half the time she's talking about something she saw on TV, the other half she's pretending to be some sort of animal. I can't really relate to either one. Have you noticed in some of the pictures I post that she has cat ears on?

Evie is a ringleader for the other three. Rather than setting an example & leading the others in good behavior, she tends to whisper naughty suggestions in their ears and then claim innocence of it all. Or is that what big sisters are for? (I seem to remember mine getting me into a fair share of trouble.)

On one hand I don't get her at all; on the other, she is a total pleasure spend time with, just the two of us, and she is so brave out and about in public. Evie's never met a stranger and seems to make friends so easily. She played piano in the school talent show last week in front of about 100 people or so. At age 8. I was so nervous for her! I didn't even start lessons until I was 8, and didn't do a solo in public until I was 15. She just took it all in stride and DID IT. Big girl! I do see myself in her in some ways, for example all of her Easter candy was gone in three days, and she can be as lazy as the day is long - but in other ways she's a mystery to me & I can't wait to see where she ends up.

William? The one we worry about? The one who is up before 6am to play Wii? He's a nut. Sometimes I look at him and just wonder what's going on in his head. Because I really have no idea. He's quiet - riding in the car just me and him, he doesn't have much to say, is just content to look out the window - and then other times (usually when it's lights-out time) he is just dying to share what is in his head. Now that he is learning to read and write, I LOVE seeing what he brings home from school, that little window into his mind. He talks about marble tracks a lot, and Wii, and his bunk beds were a favorite topic when they were new.

William is turning into quite a soccer player (Evie too, for that matter). I always figured he'd take after me and stink at sports involving a ball, but he really seems to dig soccer & is coming right along. Saturday morning he kicked the ball from the line all the way to the goal, one shot. Now, this is U6 & nobody really tried to stop it, but still! GO WILLIAM!

There was a time I would have dreaded taking William anywhere for an extended period of time, but at the talent show last week he sat quietly in his chair and didn't fidget at all. He's really growing up on me - today I walked downstairs and was greeted by William with 'Hi, Jen', and I've noticed that the jeans I bought him in February now seem to be up around his ankles. Is this how it happens? One day you look at them and they're as tall as you are? Or taller?

And then there's Sarah. Sarah began screaming her way towards independence around the time she turned 2. Literally. It really took me aback, the screaming, because she was so sweet and smiley early early on. Let's just say she doesn't like to be told no. She's a funny girl, she can be so matter-of-fact at times. Matt just shakes his head and looks at me like she's my clone or something.

She is such a big girl in so many ways, and yet still refuses to use the potty unless we push the issue. I really don't get it. She's the girly one of the two girls, and also a thief - you'd better keep all small boxes and tiny things locked up or Sarah will squirrel it away to her room.

Jason is still my baby :) I wonder how long I can get away with calling him that? I've already told you how I feel about him - he's the apple of my eye, and really takes after his daddy. They are two peas in a pod, even if Jason wants nothing to do with him right now. 'No - I WANT MOM.' My heart will break when the day arrives that Jason wants Dad in stead of Mom.

He's cracking me up at 2-1/2. There's an assortment of little 'men' that he has with him at any given time - little people from the Geotrax train sets; the fireman from a fire truck; a two-inch tall Mickey and Minnie; Mr. Incredible, among others. He usually has one or two clutched in a hand or stuffed in a pocket at any given time. He's turning into quite a talker, and I love hearing him role-play with these things.

So where was I headed with this? I have no idea. I guess I'm trying to say, that as babies, you KNOW your kids - or you get to know them very intimately in those first days and weeks together - and you KNOW what they need and what they want when they cry, or when they are happy or playful or upset. And then they get bigger on you and get thoughts and ideas of their own and it gets harder to figure out, until they're this big kid who, unless you keep them talking to you, you really will have no idea what is going on in their world.

I guess the key is to get them talking, keep them talking, most importantly, listen. That will be the hard part for me, as I tend to tune out the din whenever possible - but going forward I'm going to try very hard to always make sure I have my listening ears on.


  1. I have totally been thinking about these things for the past couple of weeks, but haven't been able to put them into words. I think it is because I wonder if I have equiped them enough to handle things that come there way when I'm not there. Will they talk to me about what is bothering them? (PS We had "the talk" the other day with my 9 and 7 year old....I am a bit of a prude, so it was a bit step for me to open my mouth and see what the girls knew about it. It turned out surprisingly well, and the words just came...thank goodness!! 2 down, 2 more to go!)

  2. I love your reflections on each of your kids. And I love how different they all are. Mine too, and I love them all the same, but I like them all differently :)

  3. You are making me cry again!

    I think Sarah and Mallory are twins!!

  4. My first baby is up to my shoulder, my second singing a solo in a school arts assembly and the baby is all about riding his bike as fast and as far as possible. I have taken to watching iPhoto go through pictures of them from babyhood to now. It makes me want to laugh and cry at the same time. Enjoy them all Jen!

  5. It's so true! Each child is different and is born with their own personalities. My kids are all so different from each other. But two of mine are more similar to each other than the other two. But it is also such a miracle how they are different and what makes them tick.

    I loved reading your thoughts on each of your children. Beautiful!


  6. What a sweet post. I think some of the best are when you just ramble what is going on in your head. Sarah for sure is your clone... she looks just like you :)

  7. I love seeing similarities, differences and surprises in kids...and always, ALWAYS love photos of girls in tutus!

  8. Sometimes when you really have some quiet time and can sit and think about them, REALLY think about their little personalities and stuff, it's just amazing. Amazing to imagine how their brains are growing...their bodies....everything. Your kids are SOOO beautiful.

  9. I can't even begin to comment on the growing up oldest is choosing a college! I've been in tears repeatedly for weeks.

    As far as the listening thing goes, I'll offer some advice (not that you asked). Listening also involves creating coversations. In order for your kids to talk to you, they need to know that 1) you can be trusted, 2) you consider their thoughts and feelings valid, and 3) you will always make talking with them a priority. I can not tell you how many " til 2AM" talks we've had with our girls. We are always willing to help them with whatever is going on and we will continue to ask questions until we get the the heart of the matter. This idea that kids (teenagers especially) don't relate to parents is GARBAGE! I have a 17 year old that shares her deepest heart with me...often. It hasn't always been easy to stay up til 2, or keep pushing to get to the bottom of an issue. BUT, it has been SO worth it!!

    So, be encouraged, you don't have to lose them as they grow up. Ours are actually growing closer all the time!

  10. Isn't it funny (and totally cool) how they are all so different. I've had people tell me that the next one will be different...I thought they were just saying that, but the more I observe of other people's children the more I see what they say is true. I think watching our kids turn into their own person is one of the best parts of parenting. Isaiah amuses me frequently. I get him for the most part. I think we're a lot alike. I see myself in him...sometimes that scares the heck out of me! I don't want him to grow up though!

    Love the pictures of your kiddos!! They are all so cute and look so much like you! Hope you guys are having a great week!♥

  11. Riley and Evie would get along great! I often wonder where this child of mine came from because he is so UNlike He talks to anyone...I am shy and reserved until I get to know you, then look out lol. He loves tv and retains each and every character's name and personality and loves to act out the scenes he sees. The boyfriend and I crack up at him all the time cause he's also got a great sense of humour and loves to be the centre of attention...again so NOT me.

    Each of your kiddos is gorgeous and I love that you've shared a little glimpse of each of their personalities.

  12. It is fascinating to watch our kids develop into people completely separate from us. Perplexing - but fascinating.


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