Thursday, March 12, 2009

The not-so-independent type?

Luke was born ready to take care of himself. Aside from needing us for diaper changes and meals, he's always been determined to do things on his own. Do not turn on the light - Luke will do it. Do not get Luke's plate for him - he will do it. Do not fetch his shoes from the basement - Luke will walk down and back up two flights of stairs to get them himself. Do not lift him up onto the changing table - Luke will climb without your assistance. Do not turn the bathwater off or drain it - he has it all under control.

His strong will prevents him from peacefully doing anything he does not want to do. This most certainly used to apply to bedtime! One night, as he was throwing a major fit about having to go to bed, I came up with the bright idea to say, "You can either stop crying and walk up by yourself or I will carry you." Worked like a charm. His desire to be in control of his own body far out weighed his desire to stay awake all night long. He walked up to bed, stifling his tears, sat down with me for prayer time (after he turned his light off, of course) and then crawled over the rail and fell into his crib. This is how the last month or so went before moving into his "new big bedroom".

I find it rather charming that he fancies himself as the strong, independent type.... as he also sleeps with a satin sheep and sucks his thumb! He has always been a child who needed comfort items - but he found them on his own and never has relied on another human being to soothe him. Until recently... Luke is "Mommy's boy" and Zach is "Daddy's boy". If anyone other than Mommy says they love Luke, his normal reply is, "I love Mommy. I'm Mommy's boy." We must explain ten times a day that God gave us lots of people who love us and whom we love.

Zach was born wanting to cuddle. As a toddler, he was the kid who would "check in" with Mom during playdates, just to hug and say "I love you." Luke was the kid who didn't care that Mom existed! Till now... It's not unusual to find Luke hanging onto my legs as I stand in the kitchen chatting with Bryan as we clean up dinner. Or to have him walking across the Target packing lot holding onto my rear (as he's trying to put his arm around me), or to hear "I want to snuggle" during a TV show or at bedtime. The biggest surprise though has been that HE WANTS TO BE CARRIED! At the store last night, he asked me to carry him. I happened to be carrying Zach at the time, so I just scooped them both up! Bryan thought for sure I'd lost my mind or was about to lose my back - but we were just fine... After Zach warmed up (we'd been outside without jackets) he hopped down, but Luke wanted to stay in my arms. Since I didn't get much of this when he was a baby, I am happy to have it now. Who am I kidding? I'd be happy to do it even if I did hold him non-stop as a baby! On our way up to nap today Luke shyly said, "I want you to carry me up." And I did...

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