I always knew that I would love being a parent. As a child, I loved playing with younger kids, holding babies, reading stories. As a teenager, I loved babysitting, playing with kids in the park, making picnics for them. When my brother had kids, I couldn't wait to build forts with them, to take them out for the day, exploring things with them. So the fact that I am thoroughly loving my life as a mom isn't a surprise to me. I love so much about this. There are elements that are harder than I ever expected (potty training is NOT going as smoothly as we would have hoped) but there are other things that are above and beyond my expectations.
Despite the fact that I am a teacher and have studied child development extensively, I am amazed at the things such a little person can do. The lowercase just amazes me. My mother, however, isn't at all surprised as he is doing things at roughly the same time frame that both my brother and I did.
He isn't fully reading, but he can read several words. He delights at sounding things out to pick out the letter that each word begins with. He can spell his name and is able to write it on his own (the m's need work, but the rest of it is clear). He knows his phone number. He knows his address. He likes to type -- so much so that he now has a computer of his own (one that Mr. W needs for work occasionally but that would otherwise be sitting idle). He knows how to login, he knows how to start his games on his own (and he knows that "apple-Q" will get him out), he types his name in without assistance when the prompt comes up. He reads weather maps correctly ("It's just a green storm today mommy. It will rain, but no thunder and NO lightning!"). He has a basic understanding of how to tell time -- he doesn't understand the minutes and seconds, but he knows which hand is the hour and that if it isn't pointing directly at a number that we are half way between 6 and 7. And his memory? My goodness, we can get away with nothing! He remembers (and reminds us frequently!) of things that we said or did nearly 2 years ago. He can tell us when and where he got every single toy in his collection (including a book that, last night he informed us was an Easter gift from my biological father. It was - he was 18 months old when he got the book. Nobody has mentioned where it came from in all this time. He gave details about getting it that just completely blew us away.)
There are other things, however, that he won't do. He is very physically cautious. He won't attempt a physical task unless he knows that he can do it. I shouldn't be surprised since he wouldn't walk on his own until he was 18 months old, but I am surprised every time. For instance, he won't go down the big slide on his new swing set. It's too tall and too fast he says. He might fall at the end. Which he did the first time he tried it so I suppose that fear isn't exactly unjustified. He warns his friends, who go down it head first, to be careful and that they could get hurt.
I've said at every stage in his life that this is my favorite part of being his mommy. I doubt I'll ever stop saying that and I doubt it will ever stop being true. And now I have to go and time an hour glass that he found -- I explained to him that they were used to help measure time before there were watches and now he wants to know how long this particular hour glass will take for the sand to empty. The endless wonder and fascination right now? The constant new discoveries and understandings? This is my favorite part of being his mommy. Until we reach the next phase.